"It's Tuesday and like every time I close my eyes I can still just picture that moment of me going down there and seeing them," said Billy Faehnrich.
Imagine being the first to arrive at a deadly car accident; it's a reality for the first person on the scene of the Interstate 90 accident that took the lives of four members of the Vollmer family.
James and Julie Vollmer and their children, Alyssa and Caleb, were killed Saturday night. Their daughter, Brittany, was away at college at the time of the crash.
Billy Faehnrich was on his way home from a family gather in Hartford with his wife and six month old, just moments behind the Vollmers.
Faehnrich didn't see the Vollmer's vehicle swerve off the road himself, but he was stopped by the man who did.
"He gets out and starts running towards me and he's waving you know and everything and he's like stop, stop," said Faehnrich.
After calling 911 and making the trip to the vehicle down the long, slippery embankment, Faehnrich attempted to describe the scene to the 911 dispatcher.
"I looked and I pretty much was just in shock cause I was expecting screaming you know and what not and it was silent… and I go in you know and I check for pulses and I don't, I can't feel anything," said Faehnrich.
While waiting for first responders, Faehnrich struggled with a feeling of helplessness.
"Those first 10 minutes it seemed like the clock was going really, really slow, it was just kind of like, what can I do to help these people out? And I'm just still in shock just going, I want to touch them, I want to do just everything to them just to help them out…it just seems like I was just there a little too late to do anything for them," said Faehnrich.
It was an experience he says will be with him for a lifetime.
"Every time I closed my eyes, that's all I can see is you know the wreck and then the people….and I was just kind of like, this can't happen, especially to you know a family and they're all doing the right thing, they're all wearing their seat belts and then all of a sudden they're gone," said Faehnrich.
It's an instant that reminds all of us to cherish every second of life a little more.
"You can't always be going you know a hundred miles an hour, you just have to take you know one day at a time and just live life at the fullest," said Faehnrich.
Since Faehnrich has found out about Brittany Vollmer, the family's only surviving daughter, his heart has been aching for her. He said if he can giver her anything, it's the knowledge that her family did not suffer and left the world as one.
You can find a video of Faehnrich's complete interview attached to this story.
Thursday, February 20 2014 7:42 PM EST2014-02-21 00:42:09 GMT
Behind the glory of football there are the scars and bruises. Some visible, some not. We still have much to learn about the health risk football puts on it's players, but some of the biggest strides inMore >>
Behind the glory of football there are the scars and bruises, some visible, some not. We still have much to learn about the health risk football puts on it's players, but some of the biggest strides in research are happening on South Dakota's fields.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 2:55 PM EDT2014-03-09 18:55:49 GMT
WASHINGTON (AP) - A sure sign that spring is on the horizon: daylight saving time has arrived. Most Americans pushed the clock forward by 60 minutes before heading to bed Saturday night, but daylightMore >>
A sure sign that spring is on the horizon: daylight saving time has arrived.More >>
Sunday, March 9 2014 2:51 PM EDT2014-03-09 18:51:13 GMT
A Chinese restaurant in Worthington sustained significant damage after a fire broke out, early Saturday morning. The Worthington Fire Department responded to King Wok, formerly known as Michael's Steakhouse,More >>
A Chinese restaurant in Worthington sustained significant damage after a fire broke out, early Saturday morning.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 8:17 PM EST2014-03-09 01:17:06 GMT
ST. PAUL — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), St. Paul Field Division Special Agent in Charge Scott D. Sweetow today announced a reward of up to $5,000 for information leadingMore >>
There is a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect(s) responsible for the arson fire to the Colonial Inn Motel, in Yankton.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 8:05 PM EST2014-03-09 01:05:09 GMT
Despite a warm-up on the way in our forecast, taking a dip into water outside may be the last thing on our minds. In Huron, Saturday, if it was for a good cause, it was hard to say no. More than 200More >>
Brave souls plunged into icy cold water in Huron, Saturday, for a good cause. More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 6:54 PM EST2014-03-08 23:54:51 GMT
The three Americans on board the Malaysia Airlines flight that went missing in Southeast Asia have been identified and include two young children, according to the flight's manifest. ABC News reportsMore >>
Malaysia Airlines previously reported that one of the Americans on board the flight was an infant.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 6:46 PM EST2014-03-08 23:46:53 GMT
Chances are, those security breaches that affected major retailers are still fresh on our minds. Now, consumers and companies are coming up with new ways to protect themselves online. A cybersecurityMore >>
The cybersecurity event DakotaCon is happening this weekend. It's a real world exercise. Each college team or "IT team" goes in and secures a network from outside use. A group of "hackers" are on hand trying to break the team's security breach.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 11:06 AM EST2014-03-08 16:06:58 GMT
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Vietnamese air force planes on Saturday spotted two large oil slicks close to where a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 went missing earlier in the day, the first sign that theMore >>
There was no confirmation that the slicks were related to the missing plane, but the statement said they were consistent with the kinds that would be produced by the two fuel tanks of a crashed jetliner.More >>