2016-08-25 / Front Page

Caseville visitors honored for lifesaving efforts

By Kelly Krager
Editor • kkrager@mihomepaper.com • 989-269-9918


Jesse J. Ross accepted lifesaving awards for himself and son-in-law Chad E. Griffin, from Huron County Sheriff Kelly J. Hanson and Caseville Fire Chief Ben Willenberg Wednesday, Aug. 17 at the Caseville Fire Hall. Jesse J. Ross accepted lifesaving awards for himself and son-in-law Chad E. Griffin, from Huron County Sheriff Kelly J. Hanson and Caseville Fire Chief Ben Willenberg Wednesday, Aug. 17 at the Caseville Fire Hall. CASEVILLE — Two men who risked their lives to save a woman trapped in a submerged van were honored Aug. 17 by the Huron County Sheriff’s Office and the Caseville Area Fire Protection Association.

Jesse J. Ross, 66, of Carleton, and Chad Griffin, 42, of Pinckney, where presented with certificates at the Caseville Fire Hall thanking them for initiating and carrying out a lifesaving act.

Ross and Griffin, who is Ross’s son inlaw, were visiting Caseville when they responded to a commission near Main Street Bridge, over the Pigeon River in Caseville.

“Fortunately both of you were able to identify the source, which ended up being Amy L. Pero trapped in a near totally submerged van, with only a small pocket of air to breathe from. Quick action by both of you resulted in the freeing of Ms. Pero, which ultimately was the difference between life and death. Because of your heroic efforts, the Huron County Sheriff’s Office and the Caseville Area Fire Protection Association, commend you for stepping up in a time of need,” Huron County Sheriff Kelly J. Hanson said.

The rescued driver, Amy Lynn Pero, 34, was charged with first-offense operating while intoxicated, driving while license is suspended/ revoked and no proof of insurance.

According to Hanson, Huron Central Dispatch received a call at approximately 5 a.m. Saturday about an individual being trapped in a vehicle, as it was almost totally submerged next to the former Riverside Roadhouse on Main Street in the City of Caseville.

While deputies and the Caseville Fire Department were responding, Griffin and Ross heard the noise of what turned out to be a 1995 Chevrolet Astro Van southbound on Main Street as it impacted with a sign and fence near the west side of the bridge, before it plunged nearly 20 feet into the 7-feet deep Pigeon River.

The van landed upside down and floated across the river before righting itself and sinking to the bottom near the river’s south bank.

Hanson said when Griffin and Ross went out to see what had occurred, they found the van and could hear an individual screaming for help from inside of it.

“Luckily there was air trapped at the top of the van’s back doors so the individual could still temporarily breathe,” Hanson said.

The pair then broke out the back widows of the van and rescued Pero out of it, who was the lone occupant.

She was taken to the Scheurer Hospital by Scheurer Ambulance Service with minor injuries.

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