ST. ANTHONY, IDAHO (CBS) — A former Eagles defensive end recently saved a man from a burning semi-truck after it was struck by a train in Idaho. East Idaho News interviewed ex-NFL player Brandon Bair following his heroic actions on May 6.
The accident happened on East 400 North near North 2300 East in St. Anthony, Idaho just before 6 p.m.READ MORE: CBS3 Mysteries: Detectives Searching For Man They Believe Can Help Solve Santino Thomas' Murder Case
Bair, 36, was driving on Highway 20 to his business when he saw the train hit the truck.
“There was an explosion right away, and the train was pushing the truck down the tracks,” Bair tells EastIdahoNews.com. “I got on the phone with 911 and started driving down the median to get to the front of the train when it stopped.”
Bair says the conductors could barely breathe when they got out of the train due to excessive smoke, and they warned him not to go near the truck because of the flames. But he heard a voice coming from inside the truck and knew he had to act quickly.
Bair was able to access the driver, 25-year-old Steven Jenson, of St. Anthony, through a small rear window between the passenger and driver’s seat.READ MORE: Sharon Hill Borough Council Launches Independent Investigation Into Fatal Shooting Of 8-Year-Old Fanta Bility
“It was a conscious decision that I’m going in because he needs help right now,” Bair says. “I ran up to the window and saw dripping hot flames all over inside of the truck. I could see a guy in a seatbelt and was able to reach in and get it off of him. He was talking, and I told him we had to get out of here now.”
After taking off the seatbelt, Jenson was still pinned inside the cab of the truck. So, Bair with the help of Jenson, began pulling out the steering wheel and other equipment inside the cab and was able to pull him through the window.
Bair and Jenson were able to walk away from the truck and within seconds the fire on the roof fell down inside and the whole seat and cab went up in flames.
He stayed with Jenson while they waited for emergency responders. Jenson was airlifted to a local hospital and on Friday was in fair condition.
“All I can say is this guy was supposed to live. I’m a man of faith, and I’ve learned to listen to your gut and the promptings you get,” Bair says. “The Lord wanted him alive. Things could have gone different a million different directions, but things worked out on his behalf. That’s my conclusion. Whether it was me or someone else, he was supposed to live.”MORE NEWS: 19-Year-Old Man Killed In Double Shooting Inside Port Richmond Home, Police Say
Bair played for the Oakland Raiders, Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles before he retired in 2016.