ASHLAND — Many have flood stories from the heavy rains that hit the area on Friday.
Jeremy Taylor’s involves saving two lives.
Taylor, 39, lives along Ky. 5 on top of a hill near Austin Hills Golf Course. It was from there he and his girlfriend saw traffic backing up and decided to take a closer look.
A car was stuck in the road after trying to cross the rising water. Taylor, who pulled the car out with his truck, was unaware he was just warming up his rescuing duties for the day.
After removing the car from the road, Taylor and his girlfriend decided to look around some more when an SUV floating down Hoods Creek grabbed their attention. Taylor got out of the truck and ran beside it on the road. Two women were inside.
“As they were coming by me going down the creek, (one of them) rolls the passenger window down and says, ‘Do you think you could help us?’ I said, ‘You’re getting ready to hit a bridge,’” said Taylor, who estimated the time was between 8:30 and 9 p.m.
Taylor had to jog to keep up with the vehicle before it hit the bridge. The water was moving so fast, it rolled the SUV to its side with the driver’s window facing upwards toward the bridge.
He approached the vehicle and got the woman in the driver’s seat to open her window. He pulled her out and helped her off the bridge.
He was only halfway done. Another woman in her 90s was still trapped.
Taylor was confident about the first rescue, but he wasn’t sure if the next one would be as successful.
“I’ve never felt like somebody was actually gonna die … when I got the first one out of the car, I thought for sure the second one was going to drown under that bridge,” he said.
By the time he returned to the scene, three other men had showed up to help. The front of the car had gone under the bridge. It was impossible to get the woman out of the same window as the other.
The men were finally able to pry a different door open far enough to reach in and grab the woman’s arms and pull her out.
The group waited at a nearby church until the water receded. The women saw a paramedic and were in good shape.
Reflecting on the incident, Taylor said it was something he didn’t think he would see in person.
“It’s just kind of one of those stories that you see on the Weather Channel that happens somewhere else,” he said.
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