You never quite know what you’re capable of until you find yourself tested by an emergency. There are many stories of people who rose to the challenge when the chips were down, and suddenly found the strength to do something incredible.
That was the case for one woman from Moline, Illinois, who witnessed a horrific accident—and stepped in to save a life.
On the morning of Friday, January 19, Trish Lang was dropping her son off at John Deere Middle School.
But as she was leaving, suddenly she heard a sound from down the road, near the crosswalk, where students walk to school every day.
A young girl had just been struck by a vehicle.
“I heard the bang and that was her head hitting the windshield,” Lang recalled to WQAD. “And then about half way across the street she slid off of the hood and down under his car.”
Lang ran over to the scene of the accident. The girl was still pinned under the car—and her parents were panicking, trying to figure out how to get her out.
They looked under the vehicle—and the girl’s condition seemed dire.
“Her face was very swollen looking and she was not making any noises.”
Time was running out: if they were to get the girl to safety, they would need to lift the car.
Lang called on nearby strangers to help out. The group of strangers tried and tried to raise the vehicle, but to no avail.
But then, suddenly, a miracle happened:
“All of a sudden it just felt like more people and the car just rose up and we slid her out.”
But no more people had joined the rescue effort—it was just them.
Yet, something in that moment had suddenly given them the extra strength they needed—an unexpected surge that Lang experienced firsthand.
“Everybody put everything you got into lifting this car up for this little girl,” she explained, crediting a sudden, instinctual adrenaline rush.
“Doing anything you can, it’s your human instinct of survival.”
The girl was retrieved from underneath the car—and the group of heroes were relieved when the victim let out a moan, letting them know she was alive.
The girl was hospitalized and is being treated for a punctured lung and broken bones. While Lang is still shaken by the incident—as a mother herself, the sight surely hit close to home—she is glad to know that the victim is, against all odds, recovering nicely.
“I thought she wasn’t gonna make it,” Lang told WQAD.
“I’m so happy she’s doing better.”
And it’s all thanks to strangers like Lang, who found the sudden strength within them to save a life.