Man who rescued woman trapped in submerged car recounts ‘surreal’ moment

Man who rescued woman trapped in submerged car recounts ?surreal? moment

GRAFTON, Mass. — A Good Samaritan tells Boston 25 News in his own words what it was like when he rushed to help a woman who had been trapped inside a sinking car in Grafton.

On Friday night, a woman and a man had been driving on Wheeler Road when they came across some black ice which caused the car to spin around and skid into a river.

The man was able to escape, but the woman remained trapped.

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It was then that Chris Etre, who had been driving home, saw the car lose control.

Etre says the car drove right over a snowbank, knocking down a stop sign and a street sign before plunging into the ice river. At that moment he says he knew he had to act quickly.

“It was surreal just to watch the whole thing," said Etre. "It’s happening right in front of you just, it’s not registering that it’s really happening.”

Etre then ran into the water, breaking the back window to get the woman out of the submerged vehicle.

“There was a kid that got out of the car,” said Etre. “He was banging on the car trying to get another person out. He had no way to open a door or break a window.”

With his wrench in hand, Etre said he crawled to the top of the car and smashed in the back window, getting the girl to safety just in time.

“For him to be there at that particular time in that circumstance and actually have a tool and no disregard for his own safety is amazing,” said a Grafton Police officer. "It’s really amazing.”

Police say no injuries were reported but both the driver and the passenger were taken to UMass Memorial Hospital for evaluation.

While he’s being hailed as a hero, Etre said he just did what needed to be done.

“I just did what I had to do, I would hope if it were my kid someone would do the same thing to help them," said Etre.