A father and son witnessed a horrific scene on Jan. 22 when a Jeep and tractor-trailer collided ahead of them in a ball of fire. But the two acted quickly and saved the Jeep’s 18-year-old driver.
Marc Cramer and his son, John, were driving westbound on Route 101, also known as Main Street, through rural Dublin, New Hampshire, about 10:15 a.m. when the Jeep Wrangler ahead of them suddenly veered across the centerline and slammed into an eastbound tractor-trailer, igniting a horrific blaze, according to the Dublin Police Department.
With no chance to swerve to avoid the wreck, Cramer’s Toyota Sienna crashed into the back of Jeep
“When I realized I couldn’t go left or right, and we were only going straight, I cried out ‘Lord help me,’” Cramer, whose dashboard camera recorded the crash, told CBS affiliate WBZ in Boston.
That’s when Cramer and his son jumped into action. With the help of another witness, Bank Promploy of Keene, they pulled the Jeep’s driver, 18-year-old Samuel Lachance of Manchester, from the burning wreckage.
Lachance, a freshman at Keene State College, suffered second- and third-degree burns, bleeding on the brain, burned airways and eyes, and a broken foot in the crash, according to the Manchester Union Leader. He was airlifted to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, where he was place in intensive care.
The driver of the tractor-trailer, 66-year-old Jean Morency of Nasuha, and the Cramers were taken to Monadnock Community Hospital in Peterborough, where they were treated for minor injuries, according to Dublin police.
Dublin Police Chief Timothy Suokko praised the Cramers for their heroism, telling the Union Leader “I absolutely think they assisted in saving his life.”
Lachance was moved from the intensive care unit to the trauma recovery unit over the weekend, and his family says he faces a long road to recovery after suffering a “significant traumatic brain injury,” according to the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript.
His mother, Jessica Lachance, told the Ledger-Transcript that Samuel Lachance doesn’t remember any details about the crash, but remembers names and has been able to speak with his family as he continues to undergo treatment for his burns.
“Anything right now is a miracle, because he’s alive,” she told the Ledger-Transcript.
It is still unclear what caused Samuel Lachance’s Jeep to cross into the tractor-trailer’s path.