In July 12 issue, Russell County NewsBy Derek AaronRussell County News EditorABOVE: Danika Redmon, 12, and Rebecca Barnes, 9, were the first on the scene to a moped wreck on Stephens Ridge Rd. on July 1. The two made a needed 911 call.
The fast actions and the calm emotions of two Russell County girls proved to be vital as they were the first on the scene to a bizarre moped crash on July 1, making them a consensus choice for this week’s “Russell County Heroes.”
Danika Redmon, 12, and Rebecca Barnes, 9, have been friends for nearly four years. The two live close to one another five miles east of Russell Springs and regularly have sleepovers, enjoy riding bikes together, walking and playing with Rebecca’s dogs.
But the two girls never imagined that they would be brought closer together during a scary moment that Monday afternoon.
That afternoon, Rebecca was at Danika’s grandparent’s house visiting. Her grandparents had just left for work so the two were alone in the house at the time. Rebecca’s parents, Bob and Kerri, live right next door. Danika’s parents are David Redmon and Tonya Aaron.
Around 1:30 p.m., Rebecca and Danika heard a crashing noise come from toward the road.
“All of a sudden, my bed started shaking and it hit the wall real hard and me and Rebecca didn’t know what was happening ... we thought someone was trying to break in,” Danika said. “We went and unlocked the door to look outside and when we did we saw someone laying in the yard.”
Danika said she and Rebecca witnessed a woman tending to the injured man that lay in the yard.
Rebecca said that when she first heard the noise of the wreck that she feared she would find someone hurt outside when they opened the door.
“Danika screamed that someone had had a wreck and when we looked out I saw that it was my aunt and uncle, Joyce Mae and (Floyd) Flanagan,” she said.
Mr. Flanagan had been operating a Honda moped on Stephens Ridge Rd. when he hit a Medcom television cable that was in the roadway, clotheslining him violently off of his moped, according to the Kentucky State Police.
Flanagan sustained a cut on his head that required 14 stitches, along with other scrapes and bruises.
“I was under a lot of pressure because I had to calm down my aunt and I had to care for my uncle,” Rebecca said. “I told Danika to talk to 911 and answer any questions that they had and not to hang up.”
Rebecca initially called 911 but when the 911 operator asked for an address or directions, Rebecca handed the phone to Danika and she told them her grandparent’s address.
“It was a joint effort by both little heroes,” Kerri said.
“That was the first time I had ever called 911 but I had to,” Rebecca said.
Kerri said that is was a very emotional time for both girls but that they responded fast and as appropriate as the could have.
“I wish I hadn’t been so frantic because now I know that he is going to be alright,” Rebecca said.
Joyce had been following Floyd on another moped and witnessed the scary events unfold before her eyes.
“At first (Joyce) thought he had been hung,” Kerri said.
After calling 911, Rebecca called Kerri, her mother, and told her there had been a wreck and who it had involved, her brother-in-law.
“I told her to get to Joyce and calm her down just as soon as she could,” Kerri said.
The girls then said they took each other’s hands and said a prayer. About that time, their pastor, James Small of the Bernard Ridge Church of God, showed up and witnessed the events and admired the girl’s actions, she said.
Danika said the girls stayed with Mr. And Mrs. Flanagan for the most part of the rest of the day at the hospital.
“He calls us his little heroes,” Danika, a soon-to-be 7th grader at RCMS, said. Both her and Rebecca, a soon-to-be 5th grader at Jamestown Elementary, said they liked that title and was thankful they were there when he wrecked so they could call for help.
Bob Barnes and his wife, Kerri, got to the scene just minutes later.
“The ambulance, fire truck and the cops were already down there,” Kerri said. “They got there very promptly.”
Flanagan, who was not wearing a helmet, was taken to the emergency room at the Russell County Hospital where he was treated for his injuries and later released.
Flanagan continues to recover at his home, according to family.