Father meets couple who helped save his daughter's life - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Father meets couple who helped save his daughter's life

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Families are meeting and saying thanks after a dramatic rescue Sunday. Four-year-old Helena White is still recovering at the hospital. She's fighting to improve but listed in critical condition.

Her family says she was able to eat Tuesday for the first time since Sunday. That was with the assistance of  a feeding tube. Her parents met one of the good Samaritans who helped saved Helena Tuesday.

"I'm glad the Lord put us there at the right time," said William Banks who helped rescue the girl. "I'm just...I'm glad."

William Banks and Helena's father Ray White met for the first time Tuesday. A terrifying situation has linked the two families in an unexpected way. Banks helped save the girl from a submerged car on Star Road in Rankin County. It's something her dad has a hard time finding words for.

"If it weren't for them doing that, I probably wouldn't have her," White explained as he sat next to Banks.

Before the meeting, Banks admitted he's still shaken by it all.

"I still see her face every time I close my eyes," Banks described.

Banks and his girlfriend Jessica Burch were on their way back from the coast when they were flagged down. It was then that Banks jumped into action, using the knife he'd gotten just two days before.

"I haven't used it until then," said Banks.

The water was too muddy to see. So one of the other good Samaritans helped guide his hand to the seat belt.

"After I cut the seat belt, I started pulling clothes out at first and all of a sudden I grabbed something and I couldn't pull it," he explained. "And I knew that was her. When that feeling, I just went into shock. And I was like, we need to do something else."

The growing group of volunteers tipped the car on its side and pulled little Helena out.

"When we actually start hearing her crying, it was just like, oh my God, we saved a life," said Jessica Burch.

Burch didn't say much to Ray White but their hug spoke volumes.

"I seen her gone," said Banks. "She was gone. She was blue. We passed her up on the hill and they started doing CPR and I heard her start crying and that was the best sound I ever heard."

Ray White thanked Banks as they hugged and cried.

Banks actually can't swim. But he believes the adrenaline kicked in and he didn't worry about that when he jumped in to the above-waist deep water.

If you'd like to help the family with medical bills, there is an account set up online.

We're told the family will receive all the proceeds.

Click here for the link to the account.

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