Call it fate, call it military training, call it heroism or just plain old neighborly aid. No matter the label, it saved the live of a Mendota woman.
According to the Bristol Herald-Courier, Patricia Lynn Ball was partially ejected, but stuck between the steering wheel and dashboard when her 1998 Chevy Blazer landed on its roof in the creek alongside Nordyke Road on a chilly, Jan. 14 afternoon. Only with effort could she could keep her head above the water. But someone saw her car and stopped, then found a way to help until rescue crews arrived.
“Even if she didn’t drown, she could have died of hypothermia in a matter of hours,” said Ross Hughes, the EMS sergeant for the Goodson-Kinderhook Rescue Squad who was called to the scene 15 minutes after Robert “Cliff” Kennedy, also of Mendota, first waded into the creek to help.
“I was driving by and I saw a vehicle was over in there, thought there might be somebody in there, and I turned around and sure enough there was,” Kennedy said.
Ball's body was under water and wet, she said. She was bruised, sore and cold. And she was stuck. Keeping her head above water was a struggle.
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