Day, a former coal miner who lives in Hindman, Knott County, said he didn’t know what was going on in the area until he received a text message saying the kids needed help getting out. from their home.
“I didn’t know what they were talking about, then I walked out,” Day told CNN. “You hear a lot of people screaming and begging for anyone to help.”
Day and his wife, Krystal, didn’t have a boat, so they waded through the water to save the mother and daughter who were stuck on the roof of their house.
“At 3 a.m., my wife and I went into the water. I put one of them in my arms, around my neck, and took them home. The older one was holding a small dog,” Day said.
After Day and his wife rescued two children and two women, he was determined to rescue his former high school English teacher, Ella Prater, and his second-grade teacher, Irma Gayheart, both alive. near.
“I kept going back and forth because the water was rising and I knew two of my former teachers were probably stuck in their house,” Day said. “It’s really sad.”
He then enlisted the help of three other neighbors to help check on his teachers, both of whom lived alone, according to Day.
When they saw Prater, Day said they hugged her “with both hands and never looked back. We said, ‘We have to go.'”
Gayheart took a few minutes to answer the door, but when she did, she told him she was okay, but that she was sitting on the kitchen counter watching the water rise.
“I wouldn’t leave her there because she’s such a special woman to me. Looking at her face, you can tell she’s exhausted,” Day said. “She spent the night on the kitchen counter and the water was on the counter.”
With the help of neighbors, Day was able to reunite both teachers with their families, who were awaiting any updates on their whereabouts.
“These are two of the most special women you will ever meet in your life and when they show love to you, they show your true love. They really care about everyone around them and that has stuck with me all my life,” Day said when explaining why he risked his life to rescue his teachers.
Day told CNN.