Mullum man who rescued crash victims acknowledged
A FATHER-of-three from Mullumbimby has received a Certificate of Merit from Tweed Byron Local Area Command after rescuing two people trapped in a serious vehicle accident.
Tomas Leszczynski was on his way to work in Murwillumbah when he saw the car career out of control, leaving a mother unconscious and her toddler trapped underneath the seat.
"Everything happened in slow motion and then it was dead quiet," Dr Leszczynski said. "I hit my hazard lights on and got out of the car. It was eerie as there was no other traffic around.
"My first instinct was to rip the door off to get to the child - you think you're superhuman - but unfortunately my bravado quickly turned to panic and despair when I struggled to even budge the mangled door off the car.
"I have kids and I felt so hopeless at not being able to get in and help the passengers."
He has a Diploma of Health Science, a Bachelor of Applied Science and a Masters Degree in Osteopathy.
But Dr Leszczynski said it was something we could all obtain - first-aid training, that proved most useful in helping the injured before emergency services arrived.
"I looked around hoping help would come in the form of more traffic, but all I could hear was the rain beating down on the wreckage," he said.
"In that instant I thought of my kids and that gave me the resolve to do whatever I could to get into the car and free the passengers, even smashing the windows clear.
"Luckily I was able to get the driver's door open and then I climbed in to help them."
In addition to hearing that mother and child are recovering at home, Dr Leszczynski said the best feeling "was telling my kids that Daddy had received an award for helping people".
"I could see my boys were proud of me and that is the best reward in the world," he said.