While Friday’s gubernatorial forum at the Cajundome was fairly exciting, for Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, it paled in comparison to the ride home.
His opponents headed off to the campaign trail after the Louisiana Municipal Association forum. But, Angelle ended up jumping up on the running board of an out-of-control pickup, stopping it before the vehicle crashed, then accompanied the unconscious driver to the hospital.
While waiting for the light at the corner of West Congress Street and West University Avenue in Lafayette, Angelle saw a Chevrolet pickup truck driving erratically. The driver lucked out; catching the green light and slowly proceeding through one the city’s busiest intersections then into people’s yards.
Angelle said he saw the driver’s head bob and realized something was wrong.
He and other motorists jumped out of their vehicles, ran down the pickup. Angelle said he reached in through the driver’s window and put the gear in neutral. The truck rolled to a stop.
“For a non-trained person like me it was kind of scary,” Angelle said. “I didn’t know if he was having a stroke or a seizure or what.”
The gathering of good Samaritans tried to give water to the passed-out young man. ( Angelle didn’t want to identify the driver in his mid-20s without permission.)
The ambulance showed up and Angelle, a father of five, went along with the unconscious driver to the Lafayette General Medical Center.
The young man came to long enough to give Angelle the cell phone number of a family member. The young driver didn’t know who Angelle was at first, but the nurses at the hospital recognized the Breaux Bridge Republican.
The whole incident took about 90 minutes from the beginning until the young man’s father arrived from Crowley.
“He had a headache and was smiling when I left,” Angelle said. “They were running tests on him.”