By Sgt. 1st Class Erick Studenicka Joint Force Headquarters 1/17/2021
The Nevada National Guard’s mission to support the Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C., this week has already proven beneficial to the district’s metropolitan community after several Nevada Army Guard Soldiers helped saved a woman’s life Monday in Tysons, Virginia, following a single-vehicle traffic accident.
Capts. Tana Gurule and Tyler Wistisen, both of 1-221st Cavalry, were stopped in separate vehicles near the intersection of Old Courthouse Road and Highway 123 in Fairfax County, Virginia, when they witnessed a car with a single, female driver traveling at a high rate of speed slam into a cement wall. First Lt. Michael Flury was also present.
(Garule is second from left in today's photo from the District of Columbia's Joint Force Headquarters. Flury is in the accident photo rendering aid.)
Gurule, a Las Vegas Metro police officer with emergency medical technician training in her civilian occupation, sprang into action, pulled the windshield out of the vehicle, found a pulse rate, and opened the accident victim’s airway.
“She looked deceased but gulped a huge gasp of air when her airway was opened,” said Gurule, the commander of the cav’s Forward Support Company. “She was alive, thank God.”
Emergency responder had to use “Jaws of Life” – hydraulic spreader-cutters – to extradite the victim from the vehicle.
The name of the accident victim has not been released, but Gurule, of Boulder City, said hospital officials told her later the driver is no longer in critical condition. She did have two broken ankles and a broken femur.
Gurule is one of about 250 Nevada National Guard Soldiers and Airmen supporting the Presidential Inauguration Wednesday. In 2017, Gurule was singled out by President Trump for her evacuation of victims the following the Route 91 festival Las Vegas mass shooting.
According to the National Guard Bureau, about 25,000 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen have been approved by the Defense Department to conduct law enforcement and security precaution missions in support of federal and District of Columbia agencies for Wednesday’s Presidential Inauguration.