Three perfect strangers who found themselves fighting for the life of a woman trapped in the smoking wreckage of her car along Highway 24 in Orinda will be honored by the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors at their April 12 meeting.
The trio came to the aid of a after her car crashed and began to catch fire on eastbound Highway 24 just past the Orinda on-ramps on February 23. Brad Smith, Tab M. Aryan Pure III, and Maria Connolly "put themselves in harm’s way and risked their lives to save a stranger in need," according to a release issued by Supervisor office Thursday.
In a description of events cited by officials and Supervisor Uilkema, Pure saw the crash and stopped to render aid. Realizing the car was about to ignite, he ran to his car to get his small fire extinguisher and emptied it onto a small fire that broke out. Smith stopped at the scene with a 20-pound extinguisher and put out a second fire while Connolly stopped her car and tried to comfort and reassure the victim that help was on the way - putting her life in danger as she tried to open the crushed door of the car.
Moraga Orinda Fire District firefighters reached the scene of the crash within minutes, took over from the citizen volunteers and safely extricated the injured woman driver from the wreckage of her car.
“These people took action beyond that of an everyday citizen," Supervisor Uilkema wrote of the three Samaritans. "They put themselves at risk to save a stranger in need, averting a terrible tragedy and saving a life.”
The Board of Supervisors meet at 9:30 a.m. on most Tuesdays at 651 Pine Street, room 107, in Martinez.