A kayaker and a paddle-boarder were out early on Oct. 24 to enjoy the quiet and spend some time on the water in Venice, Florida, when they spotted something that shattered the sunrise peace.
A white SUV was partially submerged — and had been since around 10 p.m. the night before. The driver was still inside the vehicle.
Ed, the paddle-boarder, was approached by the kayaker who’d seen the vehicle and wasn’t quite sure what to do.
“When I arrived here, there was another gentleman putting in with his kayak,” he told WWSB. “I was taking my board off the car, he came back to me to say there was a car in the water and he didn’t know if there was somewhere in there.”
Going to investigate, Ed quickly realized the seriousness of the situation.
“This hand reached out and kind of waved,” he explained. “As I looked in the car, I could see a face. She was trying to breath[e] with just a little bit of air left.”
It’s unclear how or why the driver ended up in the lake or why she stayed inside her car overnight, but when Ed tried to ask her to unlock the door, she wasn’t very communicative.
When Ed tried, he managed to open the door and both he and the kayaker lifted the woman from the car to get her to safety.
“Emergency responders are at the Higel Boat Ramp with a submerged vehicle,” the Venice Police Department posted on Oct. 24. “A kayaker going out for a morning paddle found the car partially submerged with a woman trapped inside.”
“He called 911 and was able to rescue the occupant of the car. Both the driver and citizen hero are in stable condition.”
“According to the driver she’d been trapped in the partially submerged car since approximately 10 pm last night,” the post continued. “We are pleased to see a happy ending to such a potentially tragic situation.”
Both the driver and the kayaker ended up going to the hospital, according to WWSB. Both are reportedly in stable condition.
“It puts into perspective, at least for myself, we try to do something, arrange for our own happiness somehow,” Ed said. “I was getting frustrated that I couldn’t do that and I think this was a reminder to me that we need to lose focus on ourselves and remember that we’re here for other people as well.”
“I feel like God arranged that timing for me and that gentleman to be here together to save that woman.”
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