An Orlando wife has been reunited with her husband after saving his life, thought the two were separated by over a thousand miles.
Lisa Rutledge was in Orlando when her husband, who is a truck driver, got stuck in the snow all the way in Indiana. At first, Lisa was slightly annoyed when she didn't hear from her husband Monday morning. Tim has been a truck driver for years, and always calls when he hits the road.
"That's the only morning he never really called me, so I just still can't believe that he didn't," Lisa said.
The slip might have saved Tim's life. He was at a truck stop outside Indianapolis on Monday morning. His brakes had frozen overnight, and Tim got underneath the rig to check them out. That's when the truck shifted in the snow, pinning him to the ground.
"It caught my left side and my left arm was pinned by the axle of the truck," Tim explained.
Tim laid there for hours on one of the coldest days in recent Indiana history, with wind chills at negative 42 degrees. His phone was in his pocket, and Tim couldn't call for help.
"I wound up being frozen to the pavement in the snow," he said.
Lisa knew something was wrong, so she kept calling and calling, causing the phone to vibrate in Tim's pocket and it eventually dropped to the ground. His hands were too frozen to dial, but he was able to get the voice command to make one call.
"I remember saying, ‘Whoever this is, whatever you do, don't hang up the phone,' he said, "If they hung up the phone it was going to be my last chance to talk to anybody."
The person on the other end was his supervisor, who figured out where he was. Employees rushed to dig him out and called 911.
"It seemed like forever. It was the loneliest thing," Tim says. "I could see people walking, other drivers walking across the lot, but all of the trucks were running, and when I would try to yell for help, they couldn't hear me. They couldn't see me, because I was totally under my truck."
Hours after her first worried phone call, Lisa finally got a call back from the EMS workers who revived her husband.
"I thought about our kids and grand kids and that we just had Christmas. I was just thankful he was still alive," Lisa told FOX 35.
Tim's flight from Indianapolis to Orlando was delayed by more than an hour. All were anxious to see him get home, and when he did, it was nothing but smiles. He came in through a wheelchair, because he is still weak from the whole ordeal. While he has no feeling in his left hand, doctors say he will be ok.
Now, Tim calls his wife a hero. He still has to undergo a lot of therapy before he decides to go back to work, though his wife didn't want him to at all. Tim says he's been driving trucks since he was 19 years of age.