Fort Hood Soldiers Rescue Two From Burning Automobile

Story by Sgt. Joel F. Gibson
13th SC(E) Public Affairs NCOIC

A Soldier with the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) teamed up with two Soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division and a Soldier from the 4th Infantry Division to rescue two Soldiers from a burning vehicle on North Nolan Road here Sunday.

Sgt. 1st Class David Carmichael, Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge of the class one supply section with the 4th Corps Materiel Management Center, 13th SC (E), said he was driving from the Belton Lake Outdoor Recreational Area toward Fort Hood when a burgundy sport utility vehicle passed his car.

Carmichael said he was looking for somewhere to continue fishing after a fruitless afternoon angling at BLORA.

"We passed an MP, who had somebody pulled over," said Carmichael, "At first, I thought it was the vehicle that had passed me."

"There was a blind curve after we passed the MP," continued Carmichael, "When I got around the curve, I saw a lot of dust."

Sgt. Tiffany Sorrow, an Ammunition Specialist with the 704th Support Battalion, 4th Brigade, 4th ID, and her passengers, Sgt. John Sizemore, a medic with Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 4/9 Cavalry, 2nd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, and Sgt. Kerwin D. Griffin, a Track Vehicle Mechanic with D Forward Support Troop, 1/7 Cavalry, 1st Brigade, 1 CD, were heading towards BLORA from Fort Hood when they saw the SUV.

Sorrow said she and her two friends were on their way to Belton Lake when they saw the SUV flip over.

"We knew they were going to wreck as we passed them and (Sorrow) was turning our car around, as soon they flipped over," said Griffin.

Carmichael said the SUV was on its wheels and the roof was smashed in as though it had rolled over.

Carmichael said, "Part of our training in the military is that you react to a situation when people need help."

"I immediately pulled over and started giving directions to other personnel present," said Carmichael.

Sizemore said, "First we ran up to the driver's side, that's when I noticed the passenger was going into seizures."

"I didn't know if anyone was injured, and didn't want to move anyone right away," said Carmichael.

Carmichael said he sent his wife back to the MP they had passed earlier.

"The driver tried to start the vehicle back up, and that's when we first saw smoke coming from under the hood," said Sizemore.

"(Sorrow) yelled out that the engine was on fire," continued Carmichael. "At that point, training just kicked in. I knew we needed to get those Soldiers out of the vehicle."

Carmichael and Griffin removed the driver from the vehicle while Sorrow and Sizemore dealt with the passenger.

Carmichael said, "I tried to open the door, but the latch didn't work. So I grabbed the window seal and yanked the door open."

"Before the vehicle caught fire, we were trying to figure out a way to get the passenger out through the back door, because the front door wouldn't open,' said Sizemore.

Sorrow said, "As soon as we saw the fire spark up, we pulled the passenger out through his window."

"The driver was confused and didn't want to get out, but I pulled him out and then we moved him and the passenger away from the vehicle," said Carmichael.

Carmichael said, "I know when there's a fire in a vehicle, it's only a matter of time until it gets back to the gas tank."

"When we got the passenger out, I treated him for shock while (Sorrow) stabilized his head," continued Sizemore, "I loosened his clothing, bent his knees, and when someone else brought water over, I used a cloth to put water on his lips."

"From (Sizemore)'s experience as a medic, and all our first aid training, we knew exactly what to do," said Griffin.

Sizemore added, "We kept (the passenger) from going into total shock."

Carmichael said, "The MP arrived on scene, and called in a helicopter to take the passenger away."

"The first person I saw was Sgt. 1st Class Carmichael," said Sgt. Gaylen Glick, a Department of the Army civilian police officer, who first reached the accident. "I asked him to get someone up to the top of the hill to stop traffic."

"He got someone up there, and also made sure someone stayed with the injured passenger. Without (Carmichael)'s assistance, someone may have been hit by a passing car," said Glick.

Glick added, "There's Soldiers who go above and beyond, and (Carmichael) risked his life to save another. If Carmichael hadn't done what he did, it's my opinion we would have had a double fatality."

Carmichael concluded, "If you want to call it being a hero, call it being a hero…I just call it being a fellow human being."

The cause of the accident is under investigation.

 

Sgt John Sizemore, Sgt Tiffany Sorry and Sgt 1st Class David Carmichael
Sgt. John Sizemore, a medic with the 1st Cavalry Division, Sgt. Tiffany Sorrow, an ammunition specialist with the 4th Infantry Division, and Sgt. 1st Class David Carmichael, an automated logistical specialist with the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), along with Sgt. Kerwin Griffin(not pictured), a track vehicle mechanic with 1 CD, rescued two Soldiers from a burning vehicle on North Nolan Road here Sunday. Photo by Sgt. Joel F. Gibson, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs NCOIC

Sgt John Sizemore, Sgt Tiffany Sorry and Sgt 1st Class David Carmichael
Sgt. John Sizemore, a medic with the 1st Cavalry Division, Sgt. Tiffany Sorrow, an ammunition specialist with the 4th Infantry Division, and Sgt. 1st Class David Carmichael, an automated logistical specialist with the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), along with Sgt. Kerwin Griffin(not pictured), a track vehicle mechanic with 1 CD, rescued two Soldiers from a burning vehicle on North Nolan Road here Sunday. Photo by Sgt. Joel F. Gibson, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs NCOIC