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Airman takes charge to save a life

Senior Airman Daniel Mejia, 9th Bomb Squadron intelligence analyst, was one of the first to respond to a vehicle accident June 11, 2013, in Abilene, Texas. The driver hit a guardrail rolling the vehicle off to the side of the road. Mejia was on his way to work when he saw the car and provided self aid buddy care until an ambulance arrived. (Courtesy photo)

Senior Airman Daniel Mejia, 9th Bomb Squadron intelligence analyst, was one of the first to respond to a vehicle accident June 11, 2013, in Abilene, Texas. The driver hit a guardrail rolling the vehicle off to the side of the road. Mejia was on his way to work when he saw the car and provided self aid buddy care until an ambulance arrived. (Courtesy photo)

DYESS AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- It started out like any other day; he woke up, put on his uniform and left for work.

But before he arrived to Dyess Air Force Base, a dust cloud caught his attention. In that haze he saw it, a large mangled object on the side of the road, it was immediately then he knew something was wrong.

Senior Airman Daniel Mejia, 9th Bomb Squadron intelligence analyst, saw a car on the side of the road that had hit a guardrail which rolled the vehicle.

"Once I saw the car and the amount of damage done to it, I immediately stopped and helped where I could," Mejia said.

"By the time I got to the vehicle instinct had taken over. I checked for fuel leaks or anything else that could worsen the situation and then I checked on the driver," he continued. "Realizing it was an Airman driving the vehicle, I asked for her information and then I proceeded to perform self aid buddy care while a bystander called for an ambulance."

Once the driver was taken to a hospital, Mejia stayed to call his first sergeant to inform her of the situation.

"I was just about to leave the house for work when Airman Mejia called," said Master Sgt. Brandy Wess, 7th Operations Group first sergeant. "Right when he said, 'Hey first sergeant, this is what I need you to do,' I knew it was something important so I grabbed a pen and started taking notes of what he needed.

"The best part was he had all the information I needed, ready to go," she continued. "From where the crash happened, the Airman's name and what hospital they were sent to. There was never a, let me put you on hold or give me one second. He took charge of the situation and gathered as much information as he could, which allowed me to inform the driver's first sergeant so the proper course of action could be taken."

A month after the accident, the intelligence analyst says he continues to look at where the crash happened and how it could have been worse if it wasn't for the safety features in the car and the good people of Abilene calling for help.

"That day, I saw firsthand the benefit of seatbelts and side-curtain airbags," Mejia said. "Even now when I drive by the mangled guardrail I can see the accident, but I know the driver is doing fine because of the actions of a few good samaritans."

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