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Senior citizen rescued after spending night outdoors in water

Mike Conway

Post Date:12/08/2015

Merced refuse drivers rescue senior citizen

Monday night the Merced City Council honored two heroic refuse drivers who went above and beyond the call of duty on Oct. 20.

David Soto and Mikel Schlessinger were honored at the City Council meeting for their efforts that helped Mrs. Godoy, a senior citizen

Mrs. Rosa Godoy attended the Council meeting Monday night to personally thank the two drivers.

The drivers are part of a City program to help elderly and disabled people with their trash collection. In those special cases we will go on the property and collect the refuse.

Mikel Schlessinger was on his rounds when he heard a faint cry of 'Help.' He investigated and saw Mrs. Godoy on the ground in a puddle of water.

His fellow driver, David Soto, arrived and they tried to get through the gate, but it was locked. Soto quickly determined that the fence wasn't strong enough to climb over. Instead, Soto climbed up on a trash container, reached over the fence and jimmied the locked gate with a stick.

The pair went in and found the senior citizen on the grass, with a hose pouring water all over the backyard.

It turned out she had gone out the evening before to water her lawn and fell. She spent the whole night on the lawn, soaking with water. They found her cold, wet and muddy.

The pair moved Mrs. Godoy to a dry spot, and Soto translated soothing words of encouragement. Schlessinger dialed 911 and they waited with her until paramedics arrived to help with the victim.

'We are proud to have these two people employed in our Public Works Department and watching out for our City and its residents,' said Ken Elwin, the interim Director of Public Works.

Hypothermia can set in at 50 degree temperatures, and that doesn't factor in being wet. These two gentlemen possibly saved the life of the senior citizen.

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