Lawn crew saves woman from deathtrap

By Juan Carlos Fanjul - bio | email

BOYNTON BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Eighty-four-year-old Yetta Cohen is bruised and battered. Her friend said she looks like she went 10 rounds with Mike Tyson.

"I have an injury over my eye which sustained stitches, and I have stitches on my nose."

The injuries are the result of a life and death struggle with her car Wednesday.

Cohen had just parked her Nissan Altima in her garage at the Sun Valley East development West of Boynton Beach after returning from shopping.

The engine was still running, the stick in neutral because she planned to go back out, but the car somehow started moving.  "Next thing I know, I was under the car. The car was moving with me and I was face down."

Cohen was dragged down the sloped driveway until the car came to rest on the street. You can see her nail marks on the back bumper -- her blood, too. "I was yelling, please get this car off me."

Neighbors tried to use jacks to lift the car, but those didn't work. That's when a crew of ten unlikely heroes stepped in.

The lawn crew from Seacrest Maintenance, led by foreman Juan Sontay, dropped their edgers and mowers and ran toward the piercing screams. "I saw the blood and the leg, and I said 'What's going on here?' I needed to do something to help the old lady," said Sontay.

Sontay got his guys to lift the car ever so slightly as another man pulled Cohen out.

Ironically, they were not even supposed to be working there Thursday. "I guess if they hadn't finished early at another property, they probably wouldn't have been there to save the lady," said Steven Terzo, landscape director of Seacrest Maintenance.

Cohen was rushed to the hospital and, much to her surprise, was back home in short order.

Doctors say she didn't even break a bone.

Cohen says her lawn crew heroes are to thank.

"Now, if they weren't there, my neighbors couldn't have lifted that car off me. So I am very grateful; they are my heroes."