A state trooper trapped in his patrol vehicle after a serious crash is grateful that truck driver Gary Wilburn, from San Antonio, Texas, was there to help him.
Truckers News reports that the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) recently named Wilburn a Highway Angel for stopping to offer aid to an Arkansas State Trooper who had been injured and was pinned inside his car after an accident.
In its Highway Angel write-up, TCA explains that on Oct. 4, at around 4:45 p.m., near Forrest City, Arkansas, Wilburn was driving very slowly in heavy traffic. He came across a crashed Arkansas State Trooper’s vehicle on the side of the road and noticed that all other motorists were passing the vehicle without stopping to check on the driver.
Wilburn said, “I was in traffic for an hour before I saw the trooper. Some of the stuff I noticed was insane – no one’s calling the police, cars are driving by and no one stopped to help him.” That’s when Wilburn decided to act. He called 9-1-1 and stayed with the trapped police officer until emergency personnel arrived and the trooper was airlifted to a local hospital.
“He was banged up really bad,” Wilburn said. “Lower legs were broken; upper legs were broken and he was pinned in – his legs were crushed really bad.”
Though Wilburn didn’t see the accident that caused the officer to be injured, he was disappointed that no one else stopped to help and was glad he could lend a hand.
“When I see something like that, I can’t keep going on about my day,” he said.
TCA’s Highway Angel program, which started in August 1997, has recognized nearly 1,300 professional truck drivers as Highway Angels for exemplary kindness, courtesy, and courage displayed while on the job.