Sheriff recognizes first responders for ‘swift’ and ‘heroic’ rescue of 4 people from submerged vehicle

Updated: Feb. 4, 2021 at 5:50 PM CST
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ST AMANT, La. (WAFB) - The sheriff of Ascension Parish says a crash “could have been much worse” if it had not been for the “swift actions” of first responders from multiple agencies early Tuesday, Jan. 27.

“I want to personally recognize many of our first responders for the heroic act that saved lives this morning,” Sheriff Bobby Webre said

Authorities responded to a report of a vehicle submerged in the New River Canal on Weber City Road (LA 429) around 3:30 a.m. on Jan. 27.

Deputies with the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office, Troopers with Louisiana State Police, and fighters from several Ascension Parish fire departments quickly rescued two adults and two children from the vehicle in the canal.

One of the children, Jason Molder, 4, died the day after he was rescued.

RELATED: 2 adults, 2 children rescued from submerged vehicle in Ascension Parish

“This is what I like to call ‘Service Beyond Self,’ Webre said.

Pictured from left to right: Deputy Daniel Haydel, Deputy Jamie Wolfe, Deputy Karly Gutierrez,...
Pictured from left to right: Deputy Daniel Haydel, Deputy Jamie Wolfe, Deputy Karly Gutierrez, Fireman Shane Wellman, Fireman Jeff Kelly.(WAFB)

The sheriff identified Ascension Parish sheriff’s deputies Jamie Wolfe, Daniel Haydel, Karly Gutierrez and Sorrento Fire Department firefighters Jeff Kelly and Shane Wellman as first responders who when “above and beyond” in rescuing the occupants of the vehicle.

Webre also thanked the St. Amant Volunteer Fire Department, 5th Ward Fire Department, 7th Ward Fire Department, and Gonzales Medic Unit for their assistance with the crash.

Investigators with Louisiana State Police say alcohol is suspected as a factor in the crash.

The crash remains under investigation.

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