CHANDLER, Ariz. - "It's something I'll remember forever and will forever think about every time I drive by this spot," Travis Rodgers said, standing next to a small lake in Chandler.
"I was coming out of the gym at Ocotillo Health Club across the street and I hear the thud of a car going over a curb and there was a white SUV that proceeded into the lake."
Without thinking, Rodgers sprung to action. The former Cal Poly tight end ran right into the water.
"Jumped into the lake as fast as I could. Saw the man was foaming from the mouth, obviously in trouble. Either having a seizure or heart attack so I ran back to my car. Got the tire iron. Jumped into the lake again. Broke the window."
Unconscious and not responding, Travis knew he needed to get the man out of his car and out of the water. His foot was still heavily on the gas pedal.
"I pulled his foot off the accelerator and started doing chest compressions because I'm thinking he's having a heart attack and that's when the police officers arrived over here. They jumped in the water as quickly as they could."
Two Chandler police officers joined the rescue and together, the three men extracted the driver from his SUV.
"And basically between me and two other officers, we pulled him from his car over there and pulled him to the side over here. Sat him down right here. Paramedics took over and immediately you could see he was starting to resuscitate.”
It was the greatest news anyone at the scene could have asked for, but it might not have been possible had Rodgers and the others not been in the right place at the right time.
"This is a great example of how important, how valuable the support of our police and fire departments and paramedics are. So many people take it for granted. But they were the first people in there and didn't even hesitate about jumping in and saving this man's life. So my hat’s off to the Chandler Police Department, Chandler Fire Department and police and fire departments around the world.”
The man who Travis, the police and firefighters saved that night is doing just fine. He declined a request for an interview and as of right now, has yet to reach out to the men who saved his life.
The good in our community is real.