Heroes talk about day they pulled man from burning car in Cass County

Eric Missing (middle) and O'Brien Collins.

A pair of good Samaritans are speaking out after saving a man from a burning vehicle.

The crash happened in Cass County's Milton Township early Saturday morning.

The driver was going the wrong way.

Tory Miller, 43, of South Bend is alive today because of the actions of several people.

They say they don't consider themselves heroes. They did what anyone else would do in the same situation.

Eric Missing of Granger says he was battling a bout of insomnia when he decided to take a drive. While he was cruising down the road he noticed Tory Miller's vehicle headed in the wrong direction on M-60 and called police.

"He missed several cars. I don't know how he missed them but he did, and he finally ran out of luck," said Missing.

That's when police say Miller struck a box truck, causing it to overturn, and also eventually hitting a semi-truck head-on before his car caught on fire.

Missing was keeping tabs the whole time. He swerved to avoid the collision but ended up striking the median, damaging his vehicle.

With adrenaline pumping through his veins, Missing jumped into action.

"The damage to the car was such that the steering column pinned the driver in place right at his lap, so there was no way to pull him out through the passenger side,” said Missing. “I tried, couldn't do it without having another set of hands to push him from below."

That's where O'Brien Collins comes in. He was on his way home to Dowagiac after a late night at work when he saw the whole thing.

"I do security for a living, but his vehicle was on fire when we were pulling him out, so it was kind of nerve wrecking to be honest with you. Pretty scary," said Collins.

Despite the searing heat, Collins didn't hesitate.

"I would rather die having saved someone than live and think about how I could have saved someone,” said Collins.

Missing knows what it’s like to need help.

A few months ago his father Axel was saved by a group of good Samaritans after suffering from a stroke.

"You know, I've always been of the opinion that it would be very ungrateful of me not to repay society. I've always had that in the back of my mind. If I see someone that needs help, I'm going to help them."

Police say alcohol and no safety belt are being considered as factors in the incident.

Miller was taken to the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.

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