LOCAL NEWS

2 Utah Department of Corrections workers credited for helping during medical emergencies

Feb 28, 2024, 6:33 PM | Updated: Feb 29, 2024, 6:23 am

GUNNISON — State Route 28 between Gunnison and Nephi is a road Mike Jennings knows well.

He lives in Juab County, but works as a case manager at the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison. So, he is used to the drive.

“It is a long, straight stretch of road,” Jennings said.

Since he has driven that stretch of road countless times, Jennings knows when there is just something different during his commute.

Mike Jennings and John Martinez talk about their experience in helping get an 85-year-old woman and an EMT to the hospital. (Mark Wetzel, KSL TV)

“I knew that those headlights shouldn’t be out in that field,” he said. “So, I just stopped to see what was going on.”

That vehicle was roughly 40 yards off the road and turned around.

It appeared like the driver had lost control in the snowy weather.

Just as Jennings was getting out of his vehicle, one of his colleagues at the prison, Lt. John Martinez, also stopped after seeing those headlights.

“I didn’t know Jennings was there,” Martinez said. “As I was getting off the road and getting ready to put it in park, he gets out and I see his shoulder patch and I was like, cool, we got another one of us there.”

They both went to the car to see if everyone was OK.

As it turns out an 85-year-old woman had slid off the road and needed help.

“I asked her how she was feeling and she immediately said her neck and her back were hurting,” Martinez said.

They called 911 and when the Juab County ambulance arrived with two EMTs, they all helped get the woman inside.

A vehicle driven by an 85-year-old woman went off the road on state Route 28. Utah Department of Corrections workers John Martinez and Mike Jennings stopped to help. When paramedics arrived on scene, an EMT had a medical emergency changing the entire situation for Martinez and Jennings. (Mike Jennings and John Martinez)

The moment things changed

That’s when everything changed.

“One of the EMTs had a medical emergency and collapsed right in the middle of the highway,” Jennings said.

“It startled me,” Martinez said. “I looked over at him and he was already laid out on the road.”

They helped him up, but he collapsed again.

Martinez caught him.

Even though Jennings and Martinez both have first aid training from the prison, they knew this situation was different.

They helped get the EMT into the ambulance next to the woman. However, since policy is to have an EMT in the back with a patient, it meant someone else had to drive.

Getting the victims to the hospital

Jennings volunteered to drive the ambulance.

“I have driven lots of cars,” he said. “I mean, it’s not, just put it in drive, push the gas, put your seat belts on, lights and sirens going, and people had to get out of my way.”

Martinez followed them.

At one point, Jennings had to slow down because he didn’t realize how bumpy it can get in the back of the ambulance.

Utah Department of Corrections worker Mike Jennings drove an ambulance to the hospital after and an EMT had a medical emergency after responding to a call for help from an 85-year-old woman. (Mike Jennings and John Martinez)

However, he got them to the hospital.

They even met another Juab County ambulance crew in Levan to transfer one of the patients.

The woman who they first stopped to help is doing better and was joking with the medical team as they were putting her in the ambulance.

The EMT is still recovering but is expected to be OK, and hopes to be cleared to help on the ambulance again.

As for Jennings and Martinez, they are being credited for going above and beyond.

“We are glad that we were in the right place and we were able to help,” Martinez said.

“It’s just what you do, right? It is what you are supposed to do,” Jennings said. “If somebody needs help, you stop and help them.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

A fire to one of the top suppliers of eggs in Utah has sparked the question whether egg prices and ...

Dan Rascon

Will a fire at a egg supplier in northern Utah cause prices to increase? The company president says no

A fire to one of the top suppliers of eggs in Utah has sparked the question whether egg prices and supplies will be impacted. 

3 minutes ago

A view of the Great Salt Lake from Fruit Heights on January 20, 2023. (Lisa Ward)...

Carter Williams, KSL.com

How much will the Great Salt Lake rise? State to offer a reward if you guess it correctly

Levels at the Great Salt Lake are higher now than at any point in the past five years, and those who are tasked with overseeing its level believe it will rise about another foot in the coming weeks.

4 minutes ago

A billboard advertising mortgage rates for buying a house in April 2024....

Daniel Woodruff

‘I got frustrated and gave up’: High mortgage rates keep some Utah homebuyers on the sidelines

Some Utah homebuyers are beginning to give up on owning a home as mortgage rates continue to gatekeep them.

1 hour ago

at 8:29 a.m.
 
Brenda Dye, the Fremont County coroner, testified Wednesday about the reasons why sh...

Emily Ashcraft, KSL.com

Coroner describes changing Tammy Daybell’s cause of death to homicide

The Fremont County coroner described responding to Tammy Daybell's death, and why the autopsy results changed her mind about the cause of death.

3 hours ago

(Jeri Crosby)...

Mark Jones

Semitruck crash in Washington County closes northbound I-15

The Utah Highway Patrol says a semitruck crash in southern Utah closed northbound Interstate 15 for a time on Wednesday.

3 hours ago

A composite image showing what authorities believe a missing woman looked like before her remains w...

Michael Houck

Skull found over 20 years ago on a Duchesne County fence could belong to missing woman, police say

Authorities are asking for the public's help in identifying the remains of a woman who possibly went missing over 20 years ago.

3 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

2 Utah Department of Corrections workers credited for helping during medical emergencies