You never know when you’ll be called upon to be the hero in someone else’s story.
A group of friends were gathered at Blue Cypress Park in Arlington, Florida for their regular game of flag football when they suddenly had a life or death situation on their hands. As they were playing, a white sedan came flying off the roadway and plunged straight into a nearby pond.
The men immediately dropped the game and rushed to the water’s edge. Sean Battles, Zach Thomas, Justin Johnson, and Abereon Brown rushed into the pond and started pulling the vehicle back towards the shore. The heavy engine was pulling the car into the water, but the adrenaline was flowing. The men were able to keep it from going under!
Other helpers tried to get the driver to open a door or window, but the man refused. He clearly intended to take his own life, but these men were determined to keep that from happening on their watch!
“Just don’t let him die, not right here, not in front of us, and not like that,” Justin recalled thinking.
“That was probably the most wild Saturday that we’ve seen in a long time,” Sean recalled.
He says his teammates are so used to working together that it was second nature for them to come together during an emergency.
“We don’t know who the guy is or nothing like that, Sean said. “We just came together like we always do and we just wanted to get that guy out of harm’s way.”
“Saving him was like a task,” Abereon agreed. “But we all came together as one.”
Chaotic cell phone video shows the lengths to which these heroes went to save this stranger. One of them even climbed through the trunk of the sinking car to get inside the vehicle and unlock the door. Once they had the door open, they pulled the driver out and got him safely ashore.
By the time the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department responded, the man was safely out of the vehicle. He is expected to make a full physical recovery, though his mental health might take longer to address.
When he recovers, the flag football team members say they would love to meet him and be his friends.
“I would love to meet the guy, honestly,” Sean said. “Just to let him know that there are people out here who care. Come out here every Saturday. We’ll open our arms to you, no problem.”
“Come out here and play football,” added Zach. “We’ll put him on a team and treat him like family.”
“We love you,” said Abereon. “Come by here, play with us, we’re a family, we don’t judge nobody.”
We hope the driver sees this story and realizes how much these strangers care about him!
They risked their lives to save his, and now they offer the hand of friendship. There is always hope, even when it springs from a dark situation like this one.
Share this story to wish the driver a healthy and happy life.
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