RINEYVILLE, KY (WAVE) - On a quiet street in Rineyville newly retired Army Master Sgt. Joe Schroeder was enjoying his first few months of freedom after serving nearly 24 years.
“Dexter is my service dog and he is for my PTSD, TBI and mobility,” he said.
But last Thursday Dexter was inside when Schroeder was outside working on his wife's Mustang in the driveway. Schroeder says he leaned on the car and it started to roll.
“The only thing I can think of was ‘Oh my God,’ I can only imagine what's going to happen once this car runs me over because I couldn't stop it,” he said.
Schroeder became pinned, pressure from the car prevented him from yelling for help to his family inside the home.
“I was stuck underneath the vehicle with the rear axle on my back and my right hand underneath the right rear tire, so I couldn't get any movement or balance or nothing, so I was just stuck underneath the vehicle,” he said.
Meanwhile, next door Mike Riddell, who owns a lawn care business, was supposed to be out mowing but stopped off at his house to sharpen his blades.
“I didn't like how it was cutting and just as I was getting ready to throw my last blade on, I saw what was going on at Joe's house,” said Riddell.
Riddell ran over and knew he had to get the car off of Schroeder.
“I planted my feet and I just said ‘I got to do everything I can, put everything in this to get this car up, or forward, off of him,’” he said.
“He channeled his inner Superman and he picked up the rear of the vehicle and pushed it forward,” Schroeder said. “If it wasn't for him I truly don't know that I would be standing here today.”
Schroeder was able to crawl out, but just moments before the Army veteran who served three tours in Iraq feared death in his own front yard.
“Is this really the end after all this time? Going away in my own driveway, by my own car, by my own fault?” he said.
While he can laugh at the situation now he will be forever thankful to Riddell who was just glad to be in the right place at the right time.
“He's a hero. It just felt good to help a hero out,” Riddell said.
Schroeder suffered two sprained ankles, bruised ribs, road rash and bumps and bruises on his legs and back. He was released from the hospital shortly after the accident and is expected to be just fine thanks to Riddell.