Severe Thunderstorm Warning issued for several Indiana counties

Angel Award given to first responders who saved man stuck in combine

BOONE COUNTY, Ind. - Tuesday was a special day for three EMTs and one paramedic in Boone County, after they were given the Witham Society Angel Award for outstanding community service.

They were given the award for their work last month when they responded to a combine accident, where 72-year-old Boone County farmer Lloyd Hayden lost both of his legs.

In a profession where saving lives is expected, recognition isn’t always given. However, when an unlikely situation ends with a life being saved, recognition only seems appropriate.

On Oct. 22, the call came for an injured person. 29-year paramedic Michael Fleming responded with three EMT’s. All were unaware of what they would find.

“We just figured it was going to be something a lot smaller, it didn't come out as a big call," Fleming said. "So we were kinda shocked once we got there and saw really how entangled he was in the machinery.”

Hayden had been run over by a combine, his legs were caught in the machine.

“I've had to do trauma situations, but I haven't done anything to this extent,” said EMT Jacob Pell.

Like everyone else, Pell had never been on a call this severe. However, unlike the other EMT's, he was still in orientation. Just weeks into the job.

“It was pretty crazy," Pell said. "The scene was pretty chaotic, but everyone kept their calm and we all knew what to do.”

Taking in the situation, Fleming made the uncommon call for a field amputation. A necessary decision to save Hayden's life.

"We knew it was the only way we were going to get him out successfully,” Fleming said.

Now weeks later, the team is receiving the Witham Society Angel Award, which honors people for outstanding community service.

A well deserved award, but one that’s not needed for the team.

"None of us do this job to be thanked like this," said EMT Andrea Mickschl. "It’s a good feeling, but not one that we look for.”

Hayden has been receiving treatment at Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana. His family says he is recovering well, and is planning to return home tomorrow.

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