Trooper Eric Devers of the Ohio State Highway Patrol didn’t hesitate once when he received word of the car crash. He leapt out of his patrol car and ran to the vehicle that lay off the road.
He found the driver still belted into his seat; his breathing was labored and his eyelids half-closed.
Because Devers’ microphone remained on as he ran to the injured man’s aid, we have footage of the intense, heart-pounding moments that followed.
Trooper Eric Devers of the Piqua Post received a Certificate of Recognition today for his actions while responding to a crash that helped save a commercial vehicle driver’s life. Trooper Devers found the driver belted in the driver’s seat, taking low, gasping breaths with eyelids half closed. After a short amount of time, the driver’s eyes rolled back into his head; he slumped over and quit breathing. A passerby who stopped to assist Trooper Devers kept the driver upright as Trooper Devers performed CPR chest compressions until EMS arrived. In total, Trooper Devers was on the scene for 12 minutes prior to medical personnel arriving, at which time the driver began breathing on his own and stabilized. The driver was transported to Wilson Memorial Hospital and made a full recovery. In speaking with the family, medical personnel and witnesses at the scene, it is apparent the quick actions of Trooper Devers helped save the driver’s life.Posted by Ohio State Highway Patrol on Thursday, 13 August 2015
Soon after Devers arrived at the driver, 53-year-old John Depue’s, side, the latter stopped breathing and became unresponsive.
Devers immediately began CPR, pleading fiercely with Depue to hold on.
“Don’t you die! Don’t you die on me!”
“Come on! Open your eyes! Come on!”
Devers remained with Depue for nearly 12 minutes while the EMS was on its way. After several rounds of CPR, he was able to restore normal breathing. He'd saved Depue's life.
Depue was transported to Wilson Memorial Hospital, where he thankfully made a full recovery.
We're not just impressed by the celerity and utter readiness with which Officer Devers leapt to action. We’re moved by how wholly invested he was, in mind and in heart, in pulling Depue back from the edge. If any of us should ever be in Depue’s same situation—God forbid—we’d be lucky to have such an advocate by our side, rallying for us and insisting, with the fierceness of a loved one, that we hold on.
Officer and driver were reunited during a television broadcast soon after the release of the footage. An immensely grateful Depue seemed at a loss for words:
“How can you say thank you for saving your life? I definitely think he was my angel that day.”