Tammy Saunders, a nurse at Grapevine Faith Christian School, was in the right place at the right time when a plane crashed in a river in Alaska.
GLACIER VIEW, Alaska — A nurse from North Texas is being credited with helping save a baby after a plane crashed into a river in Alaska.
In a news release, the Alaska State Troopers (AST) said around 6:30 p.m. AKDT Saturday they began receiving calls about a plane crash in the Matanuska River in Glacier View, about 100 miles northeast of Anchorage. According to the department, the plane was occupied by two adults and a 7-month-old baby.
AST said civilians in the area began rescue efforts as the plane was sinking into the river. According to the department, Alaska resident Brett Winterbottom tethered himself to an ATV and swam into the river to rescue an adult male and the baby.
Troopers said Winterbottom handed the baby to North Texas resident Tammy Saunders and that she began medical aid.
Saunders is a nurse who was visiting Alaska with a group from Grapevine Faith Christian School. Saunders told WFAA she just happened to be zip-lining with students from the North Texas school when the incident happened.
She told WFAA the waters were extremely cold and that the baby had to be given warmth right away.
The baby was then transported to a hospital by LifeMed, an ambulance service in Alaska, AST said.
A female adult who was in the plane was able to swim herself to shore and was transported by helicopter to her family, officials said.
“AST would like to thank the citizens who provided immediate rescue efforts and saved these three individuals,” the department said in the news release.
Further details on the conditions of the two adults and baby were not immediately released.