Passing Nurse Breathes Life Into W.Va. Crash Victim

The man was seriously injured after crashing his vehicle into a pole.


April 28--GLENWOOD -- A Mercer County man who crashed into a utility pole on New Hope Road on Sunday afternoon stopped breathing at the scene of the wreck, and was brought back to life as a result of the efforts of a Good Samaritan who stopped to assist.

Deputy H.L. Walters of the Mercer County Sheriff's Department said that she observed the man, Chris Basham, 31, of Princeton, taking what appeared to be his last breath when she arrived on the scene of the wreck. The wreck was reported at 5:30 p.m., according to an emergency dispatcher at the Mercer County 911 Center.

"He stopped breathing, but a nurse who said she was from Welch came up and started administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on him," Walters said. "He was still breathing when the Princeton Rescue Squad transported him to Princeton Community Hospital. I didn't get her name. She just said she was a nurse from Welch."

Walters said that Basham was driving a Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck, traveling south on New Hope Road (Route 20) about one-half mile north of Dove Lane. In addition to the Princeton Rescue Squad, units of the Princeton Fire Department responded to the crash.

"According to a statement I got from a witness, he went off the road to the right, went into a ditch, over-corrected his steering and came back up on the road, crossed it and ran into a utility pole," Walters said. The point where the driver went off the road was just a few feet away from where a driver flipped her car four weeks earlier on April 6.

"The driver was seat belted," Walters said. "He was breathing when the ambulance took him to the hospital."

Walters said that Basham suffered severe head trauma and multiple broken bones on the left side of his body. She said he was treated at PCH where he was still breathing on his own, and airlifted to Charleston Area Medical Center.

-- Contact Bill Archer at barcher@bdtonline.com

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