OUR VIEW: Heroes offer hope amid tragedyNo doubt, there has been too much tragedy in Mitchell these past few weeks.
No doubt, there has been too much tragedy in Mitchell these past few weeks.
Earlier this spring, Iszabella Morgan, 9, died in a car crash on a city street corner in Mitchell. The crash allegedly was caused by a drunken driver.
And Saturday, Jaxon Sehnert, 3, died from smoke inhalation after his Mitchell home caught fire Friday.
It’s difficult to think of either of these tragedies without feeling great personal sympathy for the families involved.
Too, a heart-stopping — literally — event occurred earlier this month at the Mitchell Recreation Center when local resident Wayne Klinger suffered a heart stoppage and had to be revived.
Yet through these stories, we have learned about heroism. Despite the tragic results in two of these three tales, we are proud to report that people stepped forward to save lives and help Mitchell find a small glimmer of happiness in these difficult times.
At the Morgan crash scene, we’ve heard that bystanders offered assistance to the victims (there were five survivors in the vehicle that carried Morgan).
On March 29, Wayne Klinger collapsed of a heart stoppage at the Rec Center. Rec Center member Sharon Rehorst, a retired nurse who was working out near Klinger, yelled for help and reminded staff to call 911. Director Rob Marchand ran in, checked for a pulse and helped call 911. Rec Center members Mario Bush, Bill Kinder and Tanner Musick removed Klinger from the machine he was working on and got him onto a flat surface. Kinder checked for a pulse. Musick started CPR. Rec Center employee Jamie Henkel used an automated external defibrillator on Klinger and re-established a pulse by the time an ambulance arrived.
Friday night, fire broke out in a house at 222 W. Sixth Ave. Toby Kippes, Clinton McQuistion, Trevor Wilson, Trevor Black and Dylan Van Bockel all responded. They searched for and found a ladder while several 911 calls were made to Mitchell dispatch.
Kippes said he went up the ladder with McQuistion and Black. After deciding to break open a window, they quickly made a plan. McQuistion covered his face and head with his shirt and was helped inside the room. Kippes then covered his face and head with his shirt and reached inside in an attempt to find the boys.
They didn’t succeed and were overcome by the smoke, but firefighters soon arrived and used the ladder that the men had placed against the house. One of the two young boys in the fire eventually died, but the other one is alive and receiving treatment at a Sioux Falls hospital.
We commend all these brave and quick-thinking people for their actions.