Holding on for dear life
Brandon Taylor had never seen the Jaws of Life up close until Thursday afternoon September 1.
Taylor, who works for Allan Myers construction company, was driving to a job site near Elkton when he saw that a motor vehicle accident had just occurred at the intersection of Routes 272 and 273 in Calvert.
Taylor decided to help.
He was not alone.
Bobby Helsel III, Charlie Racine, Harford County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Michael
Schleper, TFC Justin Rann, and another unidentified man who left as firefighters arrived on scene stepped up to assist strangers.
The half dozen men served as human braces holding a 2013 Equinox that was involved in the crash upright while waiting for firefighters to respond and then brace the vehicle to prepare to extricate two people trapped inside.
Charlie Racine lives near the accident scene. "We helped hold the vehicle up. It needed to be done. I don't sit around and wait to be told," said Racine. "I'd want someone to do that for me if I needed it."
Taylor explained why he pitched in to hold up the SUV. "There was a problem and people needed help," said Taylor.
Helsel was headed to a job at Plumpton Park Zoo. He works for Tri-M company. He explained why he stopped to help. "I served in the Marine Corps for five years. This is all I know," said Helsel.
Sgt. Michael Schleper lives in Cecil County. He was headed to Harford County Court when he watched the crash occur. He said he didn't help because he's a police officer. Instead, he said that's what a human being should do. "The community comes together and helps out," said Sgt. Schleper.
TFC Rann had a dual role at the accident. Before he investigated the crash, he was one of the pairs of hands that held the car upright. "This is camaraderie. We're all helping out to make it better," said TFC Rann.
Community Fire Company of Rising Sun assistant chief Larry Underwood said the men who helped steady the vehicle played a key role. "Them holding the car prevented further injuries," said Underwood.
Captain Robert Reynolds from Cecil's Department of Emergency Services oversaw patient care at the accident scene. "That was a great job by the citizens. They kept the car from going all the way over," he said.
Firefighters from both Rising Sun and Union of Oxford spent more than 20 minutes extricating two people from York, Pa. from the Equinox. Thomas Henry Butcher, II of York, and a female passenger in his car, Ty Stephen Granger, 20, of Rising Sun, and Brittany N. LeTourneau, 20, of Conowingo were all taken to Christiana Hospital.
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