Lakeside recovering in hospital Phoenix couple pulled from burning car by 5 Good Samaritans

A couple in their 90s from Phoenix was recovering Tuesday at UCSD Medical Center with a Good Samaritan who pulled them out of their car on Interstate 8.

Lakeside, California – If you see a car on fire on the opposite side of the highway, do you stop and get out and help? Five men at the East County Transitional Living Center did just that and jumped into action, pulling a couple from their burning vehicle in the ’90s.

“It happened so fast, we reacted quickly. Somebody needed our help, and there was no one there to help, so we’re thinking ‘Whoa, it’s gonna explode soon,’ because the fire broke out in the gas tank.” It was near,” said the Good Samaritan Jeff Lucas.

Five men saw a fire in the couple’s car on Labor Day just before 4:30 p.m. on the westbound lanes of Interstate 8 in Lakeside before exiting for Lake Jennings Park Road.

“Oh my gosh someone is there,” shouted witness Mary McCrory, who shot the cell phone video of the car fire rescue as five people, who were on the opposite side of the freeway, parked in the middle and rushed to help. .

“We ran over there. Some grabbed the wife and two grabbed the husband who was driving. Even when the elderly gentleman was on the ground with his arms outstretched, he didn’t feel like he was in any pain Well, he was more concerned about his wife,” said Good Samaritan Harry Hemphill, who rushed to save the couple, even though he was still in smoke.

The Good Samaritans are all from the East County Transitional Living Center in El Cajon and were traveling together when they collectively decided to help.

“We just saw this guy, and he’s stuck in his seatbelt, so we kind of opened the door, and unfastened the seatbelt, my friend Barry snatched him from the car and drove him to the side of the road, Said Good Samaritan Andre Leggett.

The fifth Good Samaritan, named Barry, was in the hospital with a burnt arm on Tuesday after helping the couple pull the pair off a burning Toyota.

“Even we had no idea there was someone in the passenger seat, just how much smoke was in the car,” Lucas said.

No one is more grateful than the sons of Steve and Mark Williamson that their parents were saved and are now recovering at UCSD Medical Center.

“Our dad had some irritation on his left side, and my mom incredibly passed out with just the friction. We’re so grateful, these guys are heroes to us and our parents for taking the step immediately, and it’s unprecedented.” is,” said son Steve Williamson, who traveled from Phoenix to San Diego to see his parents in the hospital.

Kane and Joan Williamson, aged 92 and 90, were vacationing from Phoenix to San Diego for Labor Day, their sons said when their car was hit from behind and they inadvertently caught fire. .

“Everyone who saw that video knows that if those guys didn’t take my parents out, we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now, so I can’t thank them enough. I just wanted to let them know.” I am that they saved two absolutely beautiful people, and we would love to have the information to thank them personally,” said son Mark Williamson, who died after learning of his parents being in the hospital in Arizona. Also reached California.

The sons said on Tuesday they expect their mother to be released from the hospital within the next 24 to 48 hours and their father a few days later.

“I’m glad they’re fine and glad that God took care of them and hope they’re fine,” said Good Samaritan Scott Andre.

If you ask the Good Samaritans why they made such a daring defense, Hemphill’s response is:

“There was a time when, like many of us, I wouldn’t have, we used to drive, but because of programs like ECTLC, we’re changing, and in that change, we’re not just selfish people, but we see are out to others.”

WATCH RELATED: Video shows Good Samaritans rescuing couple in their 90s from burning car at lakeside

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