Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Watery Rescue 3 Pull Man from Sinking Truck

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Watery Rescue 3 Pull Man from Sinking Truck

Article excerpt

A man whose pickup plunged into a pond Wednesday morning was saved by passing motorists who swam to the vehicle, punched out its back window and pulled him to safety.

A quick-thinking woman who witnessed the accident summoned the rescuers, who yanked an unresponsive Michael Holloway, 29, of Troy, Ill., from his 1993 Ford F-150 as it sank in 10 feet of water. The pond is about 100 feet off Illinois 143 east of Edwardsville.

"He would have been dead if it hadn't been for them," Master Sgt. Steven Brazier of the Illinois State Police said, referring to the rescuers. "Those three men risked their lives to do it."

One of the rescuers, Robie J. Haring, 34, a manager at ADR Auto Body in Highland, said: "I didn't consider it anything heroic. I'd like to think someone would do the same for me."

Brazier said he would seek state police lifesaving awards for Haring and two construction workers who helped him: Jeffrey D. Haas, 34, and Edward L. Rudolph, 27, both of Litchfield.

Brazier said the truck carried barbed wire from a broken fence with it into the pond. He said the rescuers might have drowned if they had become entangled in the wire.

Said Haas: "Somebody had to do it. We did what had to be done."

Police also commended Deanne Voegele, 23, an English teacher at Edwardsville High School, whose quick response after seeing the accident led to the rescue.

She was headed to work from her home in Highland at about 7:15 a.m. when she saw Holloway's eastbound truck veer off Route 143 and into the pond at full speed. The accident scene was just west of Interstate 55.

"I was stunned," Voegele said in an interview. "I knew I couldn't do much by myself, so I went back to the highway and flagged down a van."

The van carried Haas and Rudolph, carpenters on their way to a house construction site in Edwardsville. They were joined by Haring as Voegele went to summon police. …

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