TCA honors driver who aided mother and daughter whose car flipped

Updated Apr 9, 2024
Rodney Clay

Rodney ClayRodney ClayA Marine Corps veteran and trucker was recognized for aiding two women who were in a car that flipped on a Kansas interstate.

The Truckload Carriers Association recently named truck driver Rodney Clay from Riverview, FloridaTCA Highway Angel for stopping to help a mother and daughter when their car flipped on a busy highway and crashed into the road median.  Clay works for Norton Transport out of Ringgold, Georgia.

TCA explains:

On March 4 at 1:30 p.m., Clay was traveling on Interstate 435 in Lawrence, Kansas, and saw an accident occur about a quarter mile in front of him.  

“I saw a car practically in the air, flipping. Nobody was stopping,” Clay said, “so I pulled over about 100 yards in front of the car off the interstate. I ran towards the car and saw it smoking and fluid leaking.” 

The car, which flipped, hit the ground, slid to the fast lane wall, and crashed into the wall, was severely damaged. A 30-year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Clay got to the car and all airbags were deployed. He lifted the passenger side airbag, afraid of what I was going to see. As he lifted it, a young girl was inside the vehicle screaming and shaking. The driver, a middle aged woman, was bleeding from her mouth. Knowing he needed more help, Clay stood in the way of traffic and stopped another tanker truck. The driver got out to assist.  

“I told the women, ‘You have to get out of this car now — it’s smoking really bad,’” Clay said. “I was afraid it was going to blow up.” 

He said the young lady said she couldn’t feel her hips. Clay and the other trucker pulled her out of the vehicle, then rescued the other woman as well, moving them far away from the smoking vehicle. 

The young lady tried to call her dad on Clay’s phone, but there was no answer. Soon, paramedics arrived and Clay left the scene. Later, he ended up texting the father of the young lady, informing him what happened. The man was grateful for the message. Later that day the father called Clay to thank him for helping his family. 

Clay explained why he stopped to help. As the father of six, he thinks about paying it forward. 

“If it happened to any of my kids, I’d want somebody to stop,” he said.