Woman rescued from sinking car by 3 passing motorists in Eatontown

EATONTOWN, New Jersey (WABC) -- An electrician and two off-duty police officers are being hailed as heroes after they rescued a woman from a New Jersey pond Sunday night.

A multi-vehicle crash on Hope Road in Eatontown around 9 p.m., right in front of the Double Tree Hotel, resulted in one of the three involved vehicles ending up in a retention pond.

Motorists in the area immediately stopped and jumped into action, providing aid to the driver of the vehicle that was stuck in the water.

Two of the Good Samaritans, Donnamarie Viola-Disbrow and Vinny Disbrow, are married off-duty Jersey City police officers who had just dropped off their daughter at Monmouth University after Easter dinner when they happened on the scene.

They waded into the pond, where they met John McGowan, an electrician from Red Bank who also witnessed the crash and was the first one in the water.

Together, they muscled the car, still afloat, back toward the edge of the pond. Water had begun flooding into the Buick, chilling the woman behind the wheel.

"At that point, the car was filling up with water, and our concern was that it was at her lap," Vinny Disbrow said. "Then it was up to her chest, and the engine was actually turning into the water, and it was on an incline, so it was going back in."

Other witnesses reported that the woman was banging the window with her shoulder, desperately trying to escape.

"She's going, 'I'm freezing,'" Vinny Disbrow said. "I think she was getting scared, because it's filling up with water."

When first responders arrived, an officer passed his baton to Disbrow, who smashed the front window.

The Disbrows were able to pull the victim out of the vehicle and carry her up the bank, where arriving medics took over.

Witnesses said that if there hadn't been as many rescuers on hand, the car likely would have gone under with the driver inside.

"It was just a miracle how the three of them were there at the right time," John McGowan's fiance Michele DeCarlo said.

The driver that was rescued was transported to Jersey Shore Medical Center for further medical evaluation. She is now resting at home.
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