Oklahoma Highway Patrol Lt. Lance Schroyer was giving a woman at ride whom he found walking barefoot along the interstate when he came upon a vehicle that was severely damaged after crashing into the median.
The crash scene was hard to see and there were no lights available to warn of the impending danger for oncoming vehicles. Thankfully, drivers were able to swerve and not cause additional accidents.
The car’s front end, back end and both sides were crushed. The trooper blocked off traffic with his vehicle and told the woman in his vehicle to stay there as he went over to assess the situation. He thought the car may have been a case of a drunken driver who may have left the scene. However, as he approached the accident site, Schroyer heard a woman begging for help.
“I just happened upon this,” Schroyer recalled later.
The woman was face down with her head pinned between the end of the dashboard and the passenger door. Her body spread across the inside of the vehicle. It appeared, she hadn’t been wearing a seat belt. Schroyer tried to talk to the woman, who sounded like she was choking. There was blood everywhere.
After calling for firefighters and paramedics, Schroyer got into the back seat of the car to try to keep her calm. With broken glass and wreckage strewn about and the woman pinned, Schroyer made a decision to move the woman for fear of the woman not living through the accident. He then moved the two-front seats backward and was able to get close enough to move her. “You never really want to move somebody in that situation, but at the same time, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to save lives,” he said.
It looked like her head had hit the passenger’s side with so much force that the door had dislodged slightly. Lt. Schroyer was able to maneuver the door open and held her head trying to move her as little as possible to allow for better breathing. At one point, the woman was not responsive, and he feared the worst.
Another trooper arrived, and both were able to get her into an upright position. The troopers stayed with her and did as much as possible to keep the woman calm until paramedics arrived on the scene. She was taken to the hospital.
After returning to the office, Schroyer was called out to another traffic accident where two vehicles had crashed into one another. All four people involved were taken to the hospital, one in critical condition. He then went to the hospital to further his investigation into the accident. While there he checked on the woman whom he had helped earlier that evening. Lt. Schroyer was told that if not for him, she most likely would have succumbed to her injuries.
The woman’s husband was with her, and he was told she would be OK and that her vehicle accident was most likely caused by a medical condition.
“It was just kind of fate that I was there,” he said.