Monday, April 09, 2007

XXXI III

*ATTENTION* IF YOU HAVEN'T READ PARTS ONE AND TWO OF THIS STORY YET, DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER HERE. START HERE.
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I jumped over the cement barricade again and took off running back across the freeway towards the SUV. I could hear a helicopter approaching and it wasn't long before he was overhead. I looked up and a news-copter was circling about. Still no sign of the police. The driver of the SUV was off of the phone, standing besides her truck watching the whole thing unfold. As I neared she raised her voice and asked:

HE'S OK?


I was out of breath by the time I got there and responded quickly.

I think so. Did you see anybody get ejected from the car?

No.


Really? Are you sure? He's asking about his friend. This guy didn't have his belt on so I assumed somebody was ejected.


I didn't see anybody, it happened so fast though.


"Weird", I said to myself.

Ok. Just to be safe, call 911 again and tell them that there is another person that was ejected from the vehicle who hasn't been found yet. We might need more help. I'm going to start looking.



She pulled her phone from her pocket once more as I ran across the off ramp again. Once I made it to the barricade I started working my way against traffic through the debris field towards the origination of the skid marks. I wasn't long before I had briefly scanned the entire area and found no sign of anybody. It was then that it occurred to me for the first time that maybe there was no Jeremy. Maybe our survivor had been drinking or something and with a keen sense decided to come up with a story to make it appear as if he wasn't driving. It seemed impractical for this guy to be thinking on that level so soon after waking up and pulling himself from the wreck but who knows? Besides, my search revealed nothing and our lone eye witness didn't see anybody get ejected. I wasn't sure what to think. I didn't get very far in that train of thought before the first NHP cruiser barreled around the curve. Being downstream from the Honda I was the first person he came to, so he pulled up to me and rolled his window down. I decided to leave my speculations out of it.

Officer, looks like this guy is going to be ok, he crawled out of there under his own power. He still needs medical attention though. He's asking about his friend "Jeremy", but he was the only one in the car when I first got there. I haven't found anybody else yet. The driver of that SUV witnessed the accident and if there were any other vehicles involved they are no longer here.


Ok, you said there is another person somewhere?


Well I don't know. The guys first words to me after he crawled out of the car were "Where's Jeremy". He wasn't wearing his seatbelt so I assumed somebody was ejected. I ran back and asked the witness and she said she didn't see anybody get ejected but that she didn't get a good look either. So I'm down here searching...that was 30 seconds ago.


Ok sir, thank you for your help.


With that he drove the 40 yards or so up to the Honda funeral site. For the next few minutes I continued looking for Jeremy as fire and rescue arrived along with a host of other squad cars, all of which ignoring me on their way to the scene. If Jeremy was indeed out there he was in some dire need of help because he is nowhere near where this accident occurred. The longer I looked the more my speculations overtook my mind. But more importantly, nobody else seemed concerned in the least about this "search". I thought maybe there was something they knew that I didn't but how could that be? I finally gave up and began walking back to where all the action was.

The firemen are tending to the car and there are officers and even more onlookers milling around. Our survivor was sitting in the back of an ambulance being looked after. I stuck my head in and told him:

Hey man, I couldn't find your friend Jeremy, I looked everywhere.


I wondered if he would recognize my voice, he just looked at me with a blank stare and said:

Who?


Weird. Perhaps our guys injuries were more than just skin deep. Nonetheless, my job was done here and I was through trying to make sense of this.

I sifted through the police and fire personal looking for the original officer I spoke to, simply to make sure I was free to go. I finally spotted him and as I walked over I noticed that one of the looky Lous that was standing around before was talking to him. As I got closer I overheard the guy tell the officer that he was a "off-duty metro officer".... Ok jackass, what good does this information do anyone now? Better yet, what the fuck where you doing standing there with your thumb up your ass while I was trying to talk this guy into breathing for a little while longer? What the fuck were you doing while I was searching for other survivors? I didn't say any of that however and after I inquired, the NHP officer thanked me again and informed me that I was free to go.

I jumped over the barricade for the last time and began walking over to where my cab and the SUV were parked. I removed the larger remains of one sign from the road as I went. The lady was still standing by her truck.

I told the officer that you witnessed the accident so they may need to talk to you, I would check with them before you leave....You did a good thing.


You did a good thing


I suppose I did, I don't know. I'm not a hero though. It's important that I make that clear. I think we all know who the real heroes are. The heroes are those police officers who come running without question or judgment every time you call. The firemen like Nathan, who kick down the door of that burning building in search of you, without thinking once about it. The brave members of our armed forces who live and die everyday fighting for our country. The single mother who takes the bus everyday to work her two jobs so her child can have opportunities that she didn't. The father who teaches his son discipline, accountability, and respect for women. And the doctor who nurses the dead hearts back to life to name a few. No no, I'm no hero, just a well to do cabbie living in a constant battle between the shrimp cocktail and the caviar, the money or the morals and good-vs-evil.

I walked back to the cab and waved goodbye to the lady as I opened the door. Before I even got in I could hear my radio blaring with dispatch trying to find me:

FOUR AND A QUARTER?........425?....last chance: FOUR TWENTY-FIVE your ears on Andrew?


My microphone wasn't on the hook. It was dark in the cab so I had to follow the cord from the radio itself to find it and soon discovered it was laying on the passenger side floor mat. I picked it up and pressed the button.

425 I'm here, sorry about that I had to step out of the cab for a minute. You can give me that location now.....


Back to work.


.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ok so let me get thid straight this Guy Jeremy doesn't exist and you did even get a thanks...Did you get the guys name that was in the car??? Did you ever read anything in the paper about the wreck that brought clouser..... Wow you are awesome dude I just left Vegas last night every time I go out there I ask every driver (AMERICAN) if they have a blogg on the internet half say no I don't even have a computer someday I will get in your cab I just know it....

Anonymous said...

I loved it, keep up the stories, you have a gift. LOC-A-NUCH

Anonymous said...

Wow you are defenitley have a way with words. One of the last paragraphs about the 'real heros' gave me goosebumps all the way up to the tip of my head. AWSOME! Thank you Mrs.N33

jeepgirl said...

You most definately did the right thing and a good job. A truly fucked up trauma pt can really be hurt if they get pulled out of the car wrong. Sounds like this guy got his head bonked pretty good.

As for the thank you.... accept it from us. Not enough people will get it out there on the street and we have to watch out for each other. Great job and thanks a lot!

http://xeoss.com/ said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Came across you story trying to find accident prone areas in LV.. started reading and could not stop. I often wonder what I would do in a similar situation. All too often such good samaritan acts go thankless and as we all know... "no good deed goes unpunished" With my luck I would help out and then get sued, or ran over going back to my car...

Glad you survived and Thank You for caring.

Anonymous said...

Got to tell you, you know how to put a story into words. Read your blog tonight for the first time. Got to yours through link on Paradise Drivers blog. You are definately up there with Melissa (New York Hack). I'm sure there is a book in you also. I drove in Vegas from 2000, till mid '05. Will never forget the night I saw a pedestrian get hit at 40 mph on DI, just east of Valley View. I also did what I could to help until the police and medical arrived. You do what you can do, and you did well. From what I've read of your blog so far you sound like one of the good cabbies in Vegas, and we both know there a lot of not so good ones. I'll keep coming back, to remind myself of the good (and not so good) old days. Be careful out there! P.S. Please tell me your not a Desert Driver!

MrFunkMD said...

I have tried to conceal the identity of the company I work for. However, clues to that effect exist. Particularly things that a (former) driver such as yourself could pick up on. Not that it really concerns me for I know it's only a matter of time before someone at my yard outs me as the author of this thing. It's more about not wanting to give any of those pricks free publicity.

Thanks for the kind words.

Anonymous said...

I respect your privacy, and yes the clues were there to someone that been there and done that. You are not destined to be a career cabbie in my opinion. It is a good life experience, but it is a lousy job (IMHO), long hours, high risk, and really low pay, considering the hours, and the respossibility for your, and your passengers saftey. You have better things on your horizon, you have the gift of writing. Writing in a way that brings your reader into your experience. It may be more vivid to me as a reader because I've driven the same streets, picked up simular people, and had many of the same experiences you describe. But I am unable to put those experiences in to print the way you do. In the 5+ years I drove in Las Vegas, I met alot of Cabbies, some so intelligent I couldn't believe they would drive cab for a living. Some so base, I couldn't believe they could do anything else for a living. I did it to get to the next stage in my life. I don't regret it. But I'm glad it wasn't a career. It maybe is your career, but I don't think so. I think it is your launch point, to a much higher calling. But in the mean time, do what you do, in the best way you can, and keep us hanging on util your next post. P.S. to other readers of the blog, if your planning a trip to Vegas, make sure you get in touch with this driver, he is the real deal. And there aren't many of them left in Vegas!
Former LV cabbie.