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Some Say Angel/Priest Visited Katie Lentz’s Crash Scene Before She Was Extricated

Fri August 09 2013 7:11 am
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Now, friends, family and those who rescued Lentz would love to find and thank a mysterious priest who they say helped make the rescue possible. Photos courtesy of Carla Churchill Lentz and Michael Haiducek.

No one knows the priest that appeared at a heavy extrication crash scene, prayed with the victim, and gave assurance to the rescue workers, before he vanished without a word.

New London, Missouri firefighters responded Sunday morning, August 5, 2013 to a crash on Highway 19. After working about an an hour without making good progress, Fire Chief Raymond Reed became concerned about rescuing Katie Lentz from the sturdy metal from an older model crushed Mercedes.

Reed was approached by the medical transport team, and told that Katie’s condition was worsening, and that they were running out of time. Reed decided to call for a risky re-positioning of the vehicle to facilitate freeing Katie from the car. Reed says, she then called out for someone to pray with her. A voice came from outside the immediate rescue perimeter, “I will.” Nobody from the four small town’s first responders working at the scene recognized the priest. But the priest was permitted to approach Katie, and he began to pray openly with her. He also used a bottle of anointing oil.

“He came up and approached the patient, and offered a prayer. It was a Catholic priest who had anointing oil with him. A sense of calmness came over her, and it did us as well. I can’t be for certain how it was said, but myself and another firefighter that was beside me, we very plainly heard that we should remain calm, that our tools would now work and that we would get her out of that vehicle.”

— Chief Raymond Reed, New London Volunteer Fire Dept.

The Hannibal Fire Department arrived immediately after that prayer with fresh rescue equipment and was able to finish the extrication.

After Katie was safely removed from the Mercedes and transferred to a medical transport helicopter, at least a dozen of the rescue workers looked over the scene to thank the priest. He was gone. The highway had been blocked for one-quarter mile around the scene during the 90-minute heavy extrication rescue. No bystanders had access to the scene, and no cars were parked nearby.

As seen on CNN …

CNN’s Brooke Baldwin talks with Sara Ganim about a mystery priest that performed a miracle at the scene of a Missouri car crash.

Katie suffered the following injuries (according to Carla Church Lentz, Katie’s mother):
Broken left femur
Broken right femur
Broken right fibula
Broken left wrist
Nine broken ribs (eight on one side)
Lacerated liver
Rupture spleen
Bruised lung
Multiple smaller lacerations

KHQA 7 interview with Ralls County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Adair.

When the priest asked to approach Katie, Ralls County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Adair had this reaction …

“My first thought was that it would possibly send the wrong message to Katie that maybe we had called a priest and thought she wasn’t going to make it. So I went back and talked to the priest and told him we were worried she would think we’d given up hope. He said, ‘I just want to anoint her and so we just let him come up to the scene.'”

— Ralls County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Adair

After looking over more than 70 photos at the scene, there is no photograph that shows the priest on the scene.

Adair described the priest as being about 60 to 65 years-old, 5’6″, with olive skin. He had a thick accent, and was dressed in a traditional black shirt and pants, white collar with a silver, older looking cross around his neck.

The male driver that crashed with Lentz’s car is a 26-year-old male, who was arrested Sunday on charges of DWI, failure to drive on the right half of the roadway and second-degree felony assault. He was treated and released from a local hospital.

Center fire, Perry fire, New London fire, Ralls Sheriff’s Department, Missouri Highway patrol, Marion County ambulance, Ralls County ambulance, Air Evac, and Hannibal Fire were all involved in the extrication operation.

See also …
New London Fire Department (Missouri) Facebook page …

Shared status from Carla Churchill Lentz …

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