Frederick Wetzel saved Edward P. Blomquist from burning, Cottage Grove, Oregon, November 14, 2014. Blomquist, 77, was unconscious in the driver’s seat of a minivan after an accident in which the vehicle left the roadway, struck a tree, and broke into flames at its front end. Wetzel, 50, general contractor, drove upon the scene and stopped. He approached the vehicle, which was upright on the slope of an embankment, and, after multiple attempts, pulled opened the driver’s door, which had been jammed. Despite spreading flames, which by then had reached the interior of the vehicle at its dashboard, Wetzel extended his upper body into the minivan and untangled Blomquist from his safety belt. He then grasped Blomquist about the arms and pulled him out of the vehicle, taking him to the ground. After Wetzel then dragged Blomquist a short distance away, other responding motorists helped to take him back to the roadway, flames increasing shortly to engulf and destroy the minivan. Blomquist required hospitalization for treatment of his injuries, but he was not burned.
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