Passersby in western Wisconsin saved the lives of a 19-year-old woman, her infant son and a teenager who were in a pickup truck that slid down an embankment and landed upside-down in an icy river, authorities said Monday.
The three were hospitalized following the near-death experience but escaped serious injury during their midafternoon ordeal Wednesday, according to the Polk County Sheriff's Office.
They were identified as Nycole Stream, of Amery, Wis.; her son, 5-month-old Ayidden, and 16-year-old Krystyna Walenczak, of Frederic, Wis.
According to the Sheriff's Office:
Stream was driving north on County Hwy. H in the town of Apple River when the vehicle went down a steep embankment and into the iced-over Apple River.
Terry and Pamela Blegen, of Balsam Lake, Wis., were heading south on the same highway and "saw the splash and discovered the pickup, floating upside down," according to a statement from the Sheriff's Office.
While Pamela Blegen was on the phone with 911, Terry Blegen went into the frigid water looking for survivors. As the vehicle sank, it rolled onto the driver's side. The passenger-side window was broken out from the impact of the crash.
Thomas Cole, of St. Croix Falls, Wis., and Shawn Spafford, of Amery, who also were passing by, joined Terry Blegen in the water and rescued the driver and the 16-year-old as they "were struggling to keep above the water," the Sheriff's Office statement said.
The three men then located the infant and removed him from the pickup.
He was initially unresponsive but was soon revived by the rescuers.