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Keesler Airmen witness accident, save family
Airman 1st Class Kelsey Nutt, Staff Sgts. Adam Garren and Kerry Barber display coins they received from Col. Maureen Smith, 81st Training Group commander, Aug. 8, 2012, at Cody Hall, Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., for their heroic act on-scene of a vehicle accident on Interstate 10, near Bagdad, Fla. (U.S. Air Force photo by Adam Bond)
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Keesler Airmen witness accident, save family

Posted 8/16/2012   Updated 8/16/2012 Email story   Print story


by 81st Training Wing Public Affairs

8/16/2012 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Three Keesler Air Traffic Control students received coins from the 81st Training Group commander, Col. Maureen Smith, Aug. 8 for their life-saving efforts during a traffic accident Aug. 2.

Staff Sgt. Kerry Barber, Staff Sgt. Adam Garren and Airman 1st Class Kelsey Nutt, prior-service students currently assigned to the 334th Training Squadron, were on their way Panama City Beach, Fla., for the weekend when they witnessed the accident near Bagdad, Fla.

"We were just getting to the Bagdad exit, when I noticed an SUV in the westbound lanes swerve towards the median. As the car entered the median, it hit the grass and began to roll approximately five times before coming to a stop," Garren said.

"I immediately began to slow down thinking it was going to collide with us. It stopped short of us and we pulled over to assist them. All that we heard upon getting out was children screaming and I really didn't know what we were going to find when we got there," Barber said.

"It was definitely a sound you never want to hear," Garren said.

"Thankfully all five occupants were wearing their seatbelts," Nutt said.

"Once we got to the vehicle Sergeant Barber and myself helped the children out of the vehicle as Sergeant Garren got them settled down and started assessing their condition. Once the children were clear of the car I turned my attention to the male and female in the front," Nutt said. "The male passenger had no injuries and I helped him out of the back passenger window. The female, who was complaining of neck and back injuries, I had remained in the vehicle as I assessed her condition."

"After a few very long minutes, medical personnel arrived and we were able to let them know the status of the family," Garren said.

"We stayed around for a while after medics and law enforcement arrived and gave our account to them," Barber said. "I am just glad that we were there to help out."

Barber is originally from Birmingham, Ala., stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base, and will be assigned to Laughlin AFB upon graduation. Garren is currently assigned to Eglin AFB, and will move to Seymour Johnson AFB after graduating. His hometown is Ashville, N.C. Nutt, a Portsmouth, N.H. native, is a member of the New Hampshire Air National Guard to which he will return after his training at Keesler.

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