VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — First, a crash. Then, a splash.
“I looked out my window and there’s a car floating in the pond,” said Sandy Wilson, who lives in the Carolanne Farms Neighborhood of Virginia Beach.
The car, carrying four family members, crashed on nearby Parliament Drive and somehow ended up in the neighborhood pond just before 6 p.m. Thursday.
Wilson ran outside to help.
“The first thing I heard them say was, ‘We can’t swim!'”
“I swam out there, and I pulled the car to the sideline – so it was more shallow. I was trying to get the car doors open; they just wouldn’t open,” he said.
With the car in shallower water, Wilson thought he could wait until first responders arrived. But then…
“The car started sinking, so I couldn’t wait. I got them to roll the windows down a couple of inches, so I could talk to them, tell them to stay calm,” he said.
Finally, the family was able to get the sunroof open. Wilson pulled the 8-year-old, the 10-year-old, 16-year-old driver, and their father out through the sunroof – with little time to spare.
“A couple of minutes later, the car sank, completely submerged in the water,” he said.
First responders then arrived to help get the car out of the pond. Paxton Coley was nearby.
“I saw police and neighbors everywhere. They told me, ‘Sandy’s a hero!” she said.
She said it took about two hours for crews to get the car out of the water.
A wet, but happy ending, for the grateful family, though, Sandy Wilson told 10 On Your Side it’s what anyone would have done.
“If it was my family, that’s what I would want someone to do,” he said.
Police don’t yet know what caused the car to crash, but they are still investigating.
Check WAVY.com for the latest updates.