Portland Trail Blazers forward Evan Turner had not yet gotten out of bed Wednesday morning when he heard a loud thump. At first he thought his Christmas tree had toppled over, but the situation was much more dire.
A driver hauling dirt lost control of his semi-truck on a hairpin turn above Turner’s house, which is located in a neighborhood west of downtown Portland. The truck tumbled down an embankment and into Turner’s pool. Emergency responders had to rescue the driver from the cab of the truck, which was submerged in the pool’s water. One emergency worker held the driver’s head above water while others used the Jaws of Life to pry the steering column from the center console after it had pinned the driver inside the vehicle, according to the Oregonian’s account of the crash.
Turner said his chef, Kenny James, was first on the scene and kept the driver’s head above water.
“I was in bed, just getting ready to get up and go get my breakfast and go to practices and then literally you hear something — thump, thump, thump — and it’s a truck, a truck in the pool,” he told the Blazers’ website. “My chef, Kenny, he’s the one that really helped the dude out, saved the dude’s life. He did a big job. First response came quick, very efficient, and saved the guy’s life. It was a blessing, especially before Christmas.
“I thought it was my Christmas tree because my Christmas tree had fell, so honestly after that had happened before I just thought it was a domino effect, like it hit something and then something else hit something and something else hit something,” he continued. “You heard a big thump, a few thumps, it was pretty crazy. That was it.”
The unidentified driver was taken to the hospital with serious but non-life-threatening injuries.
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