Saturday, March 21, 2009


Elyria – A driver and 12-year-old passenger were both unresponsive at the scene of a single car crash Saturday afternoon on Lake Ave.

Jessie Merritt of Elyria was working behind WJTB radio station on Lake Ave when he heard squealing tires. “I ran from behind the building and saw the car hit the concrete base to the sign post. The car then went across the street and hit the pole in the Express Lane parking lot.”

The car had been traveling south on Lake Ave and had just passed the Elyria Police Department when the driver lost control and went off the right side of the road.

The car went up onto the sidewalk, squeezing between a utility pole and the radio station building before clipping the concrete base of the sign. The car took out a stop sign and street sign before striking the Express Lane Oil Change sign post.

Merritt approached the car and found the driver to be unresponsive. “I could tell she was out of it and then I looked in the back seat and saw the little girl who was also out of it. I started smelling gas and there was smoke coming from the car so I just reached in and got the little girl out of the car – I didn’t know what was going to happen. I took her over to the grassy area and just put her on the ground for the medics.”

Elyria Firefighters had to extricate the driver while Paramedics worked on the passenger. Both were transported to Elyria Memorial Hospital and then later flown to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland.

Elyria Police Officers had the southbound traffic diverted for about an hour while Investigators worked to put the pieces together.

Merritt said that he hopes he did the right thing by pulling the girl from the car; “Nobody else was around to help so I just did what I thought was right and I hope it was the right thing. I would hope that if I were in the position that someone would do the right thing and help me. It was a scary situation but in those times you just ask God for help and strength and you do what is right.”



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