A desperate race against time was caught on camera in Texas as bystanders worked to save two children, including an infant, trapped inside an overturned car as floodwaters continued to rise.
The dramatic rescue occurred last Saturday near Canton, Texas as much of the southern United States battled powerful storms front that brought floods, tornadoes, and even a blizzard in parts of Kansas.
Phillip Ocheltree and his family were fleeing their home in Willis Point, Texas Saturday when disaster struck along the severely flooded TX-64 highway.
“Life comes at you in a blink of an eye,” Ocheltree wrote on his Facebook page. “Last night leaving our home trying to get away from what was yet to come we hydroplaned off the highway.”
WATCH: Tornadoes and record flooding have left thousands picking up the pieces. Ines de La Cuetara reports.
Ocheltree’s SUV flipped over, nearly submerging it beneath the water – with his two-year-old daughter Addy and infant son Marshal trapped inside.
Myrtle Spring resident Tom Mitchell was driving down TX-64 when he came across the rolled-over car. He recorded the dramatic moments following the rollover as bystanders rushed to free the trapped children as the fast-moving floodwaters continued to rise.
The bystanders struggled to get into the car, using tools and their bare hands to try to pry open a door against the force of the rushing waters.
Finally, a man emerges from behind the car holding the infant boy in his hands, face blue from lack of oxygen.
“[There was] no colour at all and the eyes were not focused when I looked down at her,” Mitchell said. “This baby is going to die if we don’t start CPR fast.”
Both children were rushed to Children’s Medical Center Dallas where they remain as of Monday. In an update posted on Sunday, Ocheltree said his infant son was doing much better but his daughter Addy was still on a breathing tube.
“Marshal is in excellent condition and is full of life. Addy right now is fighter for lack of better words,” Ocheltree said. “She is stable and breathing more and more on her own but it’s all up to her as to when she is ready to wake up see everyone please please keep my little bug your prayers.”
He also extended a thank you to the strangers who braved the floods to save his two children.
“I can’t thank you all enough who came into the water and saved my children you’re a blessing thank you all so much,” Ocheltree said.