Seconds Change Lives Forever... NULL

Ever since I was a child, I have had this gut feeling that I should be doing something with my life to help others. It wasn't until last year that I realized what that was. Those few seconds on that day changed several lives... I believe it changed mine for the better.

I was 20 years old. I was attending college to become a computer programmer but the idea of sitting behind a computer 40 hours a week was slowly becoming too real to me. Most of my old high school friends had moved on to college to become police officers or highway patrol officers. As interesting as it sounded, it just wasn't what I wanted to do.

At the time, I was working for a company that restored old hot rods and muscle cars. I loved my job for a number of different reasons but mainly because it was different. I enjoyed the variety of work that the job entailed. Although my young age was a strong negative factor when I applied there, I was still hired, and due to my strong level of maturity, I quickly became good friends with everyone who worked there, including the elders.

The day that I'll never forget came on a very hot day in the middle of June. I was on my lunch break, heading towards the McDonald's just up the road from the shop. I pulled up to the stop light for the intersection to turn. I was stuck behind about 4 other cars and was waiting patiently. In the meantime, I looked to the left at the McDonald's and saw my coworker John, stuck in the drive-thru...waiting, just like me. As my eyes returned to the road, I saw a tan, quad cab, Silverado speeding towards the intersection in the opposing lane. The vehicle in the lane beside him slowed to a stop for the red light... the Silverado did not. As the Silverado sped through the intersection, I saw a girl in a green Honda Accord pull in front of him. Being that it was her turn, she neglected to look both ways and the Silverado hit her car around the front driver's wheel area. The impact was so hard, it threw the back end of the truck into the air and spun it sideways so that the driver's side was now facing straight down the highway. As this happened, the driver's door opened and the driver, not wearing his seat belt, fell out of the truck. The truck rolled over three times before coming to a rest on its wheels in the median.

I instantly pulled into the median, threw my vehicle in park and got out. I looked up to the McDonalds drive-thru to see John doing the same thing. "Dial 911!" I yelled to a guy stepping out of his car to investigate. I ran to the guy who had fallen out of the truck. He appeared to be in his late 30's, early 40's. From a few feet away, he appeared to be in very bad shape, and already expecting the worst, I kneeled to check for a pulse as he took his last breath. I remained knelt down for a few more seconds, horrified at what had just happened. I finally managed to collect myself, shut his eyes, stood up and made my way over towards the truck to make sure no one else was inside. The driver's side was mashed down pretty far and the passenger side appeared to be in decent shape for what had just happened. As I stepped up to the passenger side I noticed the door glass was still intact and I could see a girl about 7 or 8 years old sitting in the passenger seat with her seat belt still on. She was crying uncontrollably. I knocked on the glass and she looked up at me. "Are you ok?" I asked. She nodded. "Are you hurt? Any broken bones or cuts?" I asked. She shook her head and replied "No..." I tried opening the door and it wouldn't open. I looked back at the junk that had fallen out of the back of the truck when it had rolled and grabbed a large piece of steel pipe. "I'm going to break this glass and get you out of here. I need you to close your eyes and look away" As she did that, I took the pipe and rammed the end into the window shattering it and used it to clear away the broken glass. I reached in and unbuckled the little girl and lifted her out through the broken window. As I started carrying her towards my car I was relieved to finally hear sirens in the distance. "Where's my daddy? Is he ok?" she asked. My heart sunk... The only thing I could think of to bring peace to her worries was "He's in good hands now..." because honestly... He is.

That day has changed my life forever and has brought me to where I am today. I am now a Volunteer Firefighter for my local fire department. I feel like this is my calling and I am fulfilling it in the best way possible. In honor of the little girl I rescued that day, I'm currently in training to become an extrication specialist. Although there was no way that I could have saved her father's life that day, the training that I am receiving will allow me to save someone else's life in the future.

Submitted by Anonymous


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