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Turlock Women Want To Know Who They Rescued From Burning Van

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Nick Janes Nick Janes
Nick Janes joined KOVR/KMAX in December 2008 as a reporter. Nick...
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TURLOCK (CBS13) — Two women who helped pull a man from his burning car want to meet him, because they didn’t get his name in the commotion.

The story begins with Maritza Saucedo sitting at her desk at the Caremore Medical Center in Turlock on Feb. 17.

“Some lady came into our office stating there was a car accident right here,” she said.

A man backed his van into a parked car after paramedics say he had a seizure and lost control.

“I just saw Maritza’s face and her expression, and it looked like fear, just pure fear,” said Vanessa Furtado.

These were crucial seconds. What you don’t see in the video is the back of the van smoking, starting to catch fire.

“I see everybody’s trying to punch out the window, they have hammers out,” Saucedo said.

The man’s foot was pinned on the gas pedal, spinning the van’s wheels. He was incoherent and couldn’t get out, and the two medical assistants couldn’t get in.

Saucedo grabbed a stool from the lab and swung it down, smashing the windshield.

“It was one of those moments where nothing else is on your mind except getting this man free,” she said.

In the smoky haze, Furtado climbed on the hood and used a cane to reach inside and unlock his doors.

“I turned off his car, because it was smoking in there,” she said. “It smelled so bad, I couldn’t breathe.”

But an ambulance rushed him away before they had a chance to find out who he is. They’re coming forward, hoping he’ll do the same.

“We wanted to ask anyone out there that knows him or knows what happened that’ve heard from him, if he’s OK,” Saucedo said. “We’re just really concerned about him.”

It’s rumored the man may be a medical professional who works in the area, but the ladies hope they’ll soon be able to have a conversation with the man whose live they probably saved.

The unidentified man was taken to a local hospital. The two women were not hurt, aside from minor smoke inhalation.

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