Teamwork among Carthage emergency workers and new equipment purchased with county and private grant money made Wednesday’s rescue of a man from the Spring River easier and safer for rescuers and the victim.
Family members called 9-1-1 to report that a man, who was suicidal and possibly drunk, had thrown himself into the Spring River near the Francis Street bridge at around 3 p.m. on Wednesday.
Carthage firefighters, police officers and emergency medical workers found the man lying semi-conscious on a gravel bar just west of the bridge.
Carthage Fire Chief Chris Thompson said it took training, teamwork and new equipment to rescue the man and get him to help.
“The terrain was rough and the water was too low for us to launch our boat to go get him,” Thompson said. “We carried him from the river and the police department brought in their Gator (all-terrain vehicle) to carry him from the bank. It demonstrates the usefulness of that new piece of equipment. It have taken twice the amount of manpower to get him out and carrying him up these steep banks would have been dangerous.”
Family members waiting near the bridge said the man recently divorced and lost his family. The man’s mom and sisters said he’s taken up drinking to cope with his problems and tried to kill himself in the past.
“He doesn’t realize he’s killing us too,” his mother said. “If you are a Christian, please pray for him.”