His first mistake was not pulling the front wheel up, that's what the skid plate is for. I've got a HD buddy who had a deer jump the bike in front of him and literally land in his lap. Took him and his girlfriend clean off the bike. They were riding in Iowa so of course they had their helmets off. Little road rash, a broken arm for him, broken leg and messed-up knee for her and the double bonus of fairly serious head trauma for both (they get a cheaper room at the hospital that way). I've had my head (helmeted) on the pavement/dirt numerous times. Not once did I think "This helmet is stupid, I could have survived that fall without one).
"My KLR belongs to God, when he wants it clean he washes it."