The summer months have brought hot weather across the United States that has pushed many people indoors. While sweltering temperatures have been an inconvenience for some, they’ve been downright dangerous for others.
Crystal Ault of Steubenville, Ohio, had been in her home for several days trying to escape the oppressive heat. Just before the Independence Day holiday, Ault finally ventured out of her home.
Ault had only driven a block from her home before she began to feel the effects of the heat.
With temperatures approaching triple-digits, Ault quickly began feeling the heat’s energy-zapping effects. She’d barely left her own street before her health started to nosedive dangerously.
Ault, who uses an inhaler, started experiencing difficulty breathing. She pulled her car over into a BP gas station, hoping that someone would see her inaudible plea for help.
“I just mouthed the words ‘help me,’ and he saw me and he just literally went around the counter and ran out to me; just like that,” Crystal Ault told WTOV.
Anthony Marks has only been working at the BP station for a little over a month, but he attentively caught a glimpse of Ault as she pulled into the station.
Marks saw Ault mouth the words “help me,” and he leaped to action.
Without delay, Marks left his post behind the counter and ran out to Ault’s car. She was barely responsive by the time he reached her.
“She pulled up when I was working at the window and she look distressed, so I ran out there and put her car in park and brought her inside,” Marks told WTOV.
“What I thought was going on was that she couldn’t breathe,” Marks said. “And when I got out there, I was right: she couldn’t breathe.”
Ault was battling symptoms of heat stroke, exacerbated by complications resulting from her emphysema. She’d left her inhaler at home, so Marks raced back home to fetch his for her to use.
“I just had run out of my inhaler,” she said. “He left and went home and gave me his inhaler. He’s like a guardian angel—a guardian angel. He was there at the right time.”
Once Ault was feeling better, Marks offered to take her home.
Marks gave Ault some water as she recovered inside of the gas station. He wanted to make sure she was able to get home safely once she was feeling better.
“He was wonderful. He even bought me some pop,” Ault said. “Then he said, ‘I’m going to drive you home,’ and I said, ‘how?’ and he goes, ‘well, I’ll drive your car up there and I’ll walk back.’ I was so touched; so touched.”
Ault said she thinks Marks has a future as a paramedic or a police officer, but he feels like he was just doing the right thing.
“I just appreciate her, that’s all,” Marks said. “She’s a good woman and she seems like she has a nice heart. If it was one of my family members, I would want someone to do that for me, you know?”