Student helps keep woman from oncoming traffic

Published 9:48 pm Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A Chilton County High School student helped avert a potentially disastrous situation Monday night in Clanton.

Blake Hudson was talking to Faye Collins, his former seventh grade teacher at Clanton Middle School, outside Cornerstone Fitness and Wellness when they heard yelling and noticed a woman walking down a busy Highway 145.

“I thought maybe she was just walking across the road or something, but then I saw there were nurses on the other side of the road yelling back at her,” Hudson said.

The woman apparently was leaving the Katherine Vickery Home, where care is given to adults with special needs.

Patients at the home aren’t under court orders to remain there, Clanton Police Chief Brian Stilwell said, but the woman was causing an immediate threat to the safety of herself and motorists.

Hudson ran out to the woman at the same time that a nurse had grabbed hold of her, but the woman broke free and continued walking down the road.

“It was pretty clear that she wasn’t going to come off of the road,” said Hudson, who stayed with the woman, to try to protect her from oncoming traffic on the dark road, while the nurse called the police.

Hudson said the woman told him that she wanted to end her life and looked to be making an effort to place herself in front of oncoming vehicles. She resisted Hudson’s help, even striking him with her purse, though no injury was caused.

Another bystander that became aware of the situation drove a vehicle alongside Hudson and the woman, attempting to notify traffic of the dangerous situation.

Hudson said he thinks God used him to help the woman.

“God was with me every step of the way,” he said about the ordeal that went on for several blocks.

Police arrived on the scene and were able to persuade the woman to leave the roadway.

Based on her experience with Hudson as a younger student, Collins said she wasn’t surprised to see him try to help, even if it meant putting himself in danger.

“He took off running to help her–to save her,” Collins said. “He hung in there, and there was tons of traffic heading to them. I was very proud of him.”