DENHAM SPRINGS, LA (WAFB) - Eight months ago, Kyleen Kiger-Smith's baking business, Fairy Dust Cakes, was displaced following the August 2016 flood. Wednesday, she was at her building on Hwy. 190 doing some rehab work. "I heard something that sounded like people yelling," said Kiger-Smith.
She thought she heard a very faint cry for help, nearly 300 feet away from where she was standing, across the highway. "There was no way for me to be able to see him from here. I just knew I heard something," said Kiger-Smith.
No one else in the area seemed to hear it, so she went about her business. "And then, I thought I heard it again; eight minutes, ten minutes had already passed. I walked out to my mailbox and I clearly heard 'help,'" said Kiger-Smith.
The baker jumped into her car and drove across the highway to where she thought the sound was coming from, the Carpet One Floor & Home parking lot. Kiger-Smith found a man trapped under a large delivery truck. She says the man was alert and calmly told her to "break the window."
That's when she enlisted the help of more Good Samaritans at Carpet One. "I had literally ran out of my shoes," Kiger-Smith explains.
Carpet One employee, Jake Shustz, says he is no stranger to stressful situations and jumped into action. "He was trying to scream 'help,'" said Shustz.
Denham Springs Police says the driver of the truck was making a delivery when he got out, not realizing the truck was still in gear. Police say the driver told them the truck started to roll towards oncoming traffic, so he threw his body in front of the moving truck to stop it. He was run over and dragged 6 to 8 feet before the truck hit the curb.
Shustz says when he ran outside to help the driver, he noticed the large delivery truck was still running and pinned on top of his rib cage. Shustz says his first thought was to move the truck, but the door handle on the driver side door was missing, so he broke the window to get in. "Reached through and opened the door. It was still in drive, put it in reverse, and backed off him," he said.
Pieces of glass, the t-shirt of the driver, tire tracks, and cuts and scrapes on Shustz's wrist act as reminders of the heroic act that potentially saved a life. "You don't really think about it, you just do it. You hear the word 'help' and you have to react. It's not something you should ignore," said Kiger-Smith.
Kiger-Smith adds she believes it was divine intervention that allowed her to hear the man's cries for help. "I totally believe in that, but this man was supposed to be saved for a reason because it was not his time," she said.
Denham Springs Police says the driver was alert when transported to the hospital. His current condition is unknown.