National News

UPS driver saves man from drowning

Posted July 14

— A UPS driver delivering packages Monday likely saved a man's life following a serious crash in Jefferson County.

Coy Danner was headed west on County Line Road near 4500 East around 4 p.m. when he says he saw the tail end of a pickup truck suddenly swing around.

"As drivers, we're always looking for kids and dogs in the road, but I've never seen anything like this," Danner tells EastIdahoNews.com. "The water shot up, and all of a sudden that truck was gone, and there was water splashing up."

Investigators with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office say a 2001 Mercedes SUV driven by 52-year-old Wayne Walker of Lewisville failed to stop at a stop sign on County Line Road. Walker crashed into a 2017 Chevrolet truck being driven by 61-year-old Richard Wood of St. George, Utah, deputies said.

The pickup was not in the water, but the SUV was.

Danner, who has been a UPS driver for three years, immediately pulled over and rushed to the canal, where Walker's SUV was in the water.

"I jumped onto the back of the truck bed that was still on land (next to Walker's SUV) and saw the man was about a foot and a half down in the water. He wasn't moving, and I thought he was dead," Danner says.

Danner grabbed Walker and held his head above the water "for at least a minute or two" as the SUV slowly sunk.

"It was a little bit scary, but I wasn't going to move," Danner says. "All of a sudden he made a noise like he was hurting. I thought, 'This guy is alive! His body is alive!'"

A passerby, who Danner didn't know, arrived, and both men helped carry Walker out of the water. They placed him on the back of the pickup truck bed, and emergency responders began working on him.

"After it was over, I was shaking. I couldn't even think. I went numb, and I didn't know what else to do except go back to work," Danner says.

Walker was flown by air ambulance to Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center with serious head and arm injuries. He was listed in critical condition Friday morning. Wood and his passenger were not seriously injured.

A member of Walker's family tells EastIdahoNews.com Danner "is a hero in our eyes." And the UPS driver hopes to meet the man he saved one day.

"The family messaged me and thanked me. That meant a lot. I hope to shake the guy's hand soon," Danner says.

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