Friday, January 8, 2010

Wow...Google Earth Rocks!!

Update: Names are no longer secret! ;) Here is the link to the Fox 9 News story about this wonderful rescue!!

So, I get to work yesterday, and there are a TON of people in my friend/co-worker's office. I make a comment about a "party goi
n' on"...only to find out, it's not a "typical" party.

Turns out, it was a "search party", of sorts.

You see, yesterday, in southern MinneSOOOta, there was some nasty weather. Snow, combined with blowing winds, and frigid temps created an awful mess. Closed roads, drifts, icy streets. Bad stuff.

My friend's husband was on business, driving th
rough the country in what he told her was "the worst blizzard" he's ever seen. And he was stranded.


In his truck.

Which was buried in the ditch.

Without anyway for anyone to help him.

His only change of clothes were soaked, from helping a family out of the ditch earlier in the morning. But, he had two Cliff bars (which would've lasted me about 7.2 seconds...I'd've eaten them for comfort...or outta boredom...or fear. Who am I kidding...I would've sobbed like a baby!)

And my poor friend was beside herself.

Things were so bad, that when he called 911, he was told "there's nothing we can do for you"...can you imagine?

What happened next, is pretty amazing. You think we nurses are just kind, compassionate caretakers?

Ha! Seems that we are a resourceful bunch...who use our critical thinking skills in many ways!

Story goes, that a couple of nurses are married to police officers. They called their hubby's who then began working behind the scenes to see what they could do to help Matt.

The county sheriff was able to contact Matt, and give him some survival skills (which, unfortunately, 911 did not) and reassure him that they would get to him...but for sure not until dark.

Well, dark was coming quickly...and word was, that a "rescue" was not likely until the morning. resourceful co-workers tapped into the internet (*insert thanks to Al Gore here*...ahem...or not) and utilized Google Earth.

They were able to nearly pinpoint Matt's location (by his knowledge of the area), they found some nearby farms...and began to google addresses to get names and phone numbers.

The people they contacted were quite helpful...a few were wrong locations...reports were that visibility was zero. Nil. Nada.

Then...they got into contact with a couple who were very willing to help.

To make a long story was determined that Matt had seen a pickup truck pass by (unable to see him, apparently)...and the neighbor's of the helpful couple mentioned above, had seen the same pickup.

So...the neighbors made a quick decision. They decided to jump in their very own vehicle and "follow the tracks" of the random rogue pickup that had driven past Matt, and use those tracks to find him!

And they did!! In the dark, after nearly twelve hours of being stranded...Matt was rescued and sitting by a warm fire (poor of our jokester nurses told her, "Yeah, Jill and Ben** are probably serial killers"...thankfully she saw the humor!).

Praise the Lord! Melissa was beaming! And so incredibly amazed that "we" (aside by me...I didn't do much) saved her hubby! She said because of "our" investigation skills and stick-to-itiveness, we helped to rescue him!

What a wonderful day!

So, a big thank you to Google Earth!!! And an even bigger thank you to Jill and Ben and their neighbors who helped rescue Matt!

**Names changed to protect identities...although I don't really know what the real names are!! ;)


  1. That is such an amazing story!! How cool is that, seriously!

  2. Wow! that is amazing! God definitely had a hand in that.

  3. 'Ya'll' should call the news and be on it for that rescue! Seriously amazing!! So glad he is okay!

  4. That is amazing and awesome! Good job girls!!

    Glad to hear he is safe and sound!

  5. Super great story..sounds to me like you did it justice..thanks for sharing Mama!!

  6. Oh my goodness! Being stuck in the ditch in a blizzard is one of my biggest fears! I don't think I know enough survival skills . ..
    And Tigger was making me watch one of those re-inactment shows about a couple getting stranded in a blizzard and .. . blech. Anyway, PRAISE GOD that you all found it!

  7. Cool story! I'm glad he was found!!
    Haha, I would have eaten those Cliff bars right up, too. And sobbed like a baby!

  8. Seriously someone should call the news they would love the google earth bit! This is amazing. People are so awesome!

  9. Amazing story. I will pass this on to the news desk for sure. I'm going to email you my cell number so you can call with details. I'm so glad he's okay.

  10. So there's a chance you could be using their real names! ;) What a story.

  11. wow, what a great story. Thanks for sharing!

  12. That's crazy the 911 operators couldn't give him some survival tips! I'm glad the neighbors stepped up and helped out. That's an amazing story!

  13. There are still some good people left in this world!! Amazing story, sweetened my day!

  14. Team work will save the day every time. What a great story. It is refreshing to know there are still compassionate and kind people left in this world.

  15. that is crazy! i thought it was going to be a funny lighthearted story till i saw the pics of his truck & my heart dropped. I was like omg, & started biting my fingernails! LOL. Sooooo glad he's ok!

  16. Note by me...Not Matt's truck. Sorry, should've stated that! Just a random photo placed for effect!! Wish I would've had some "real" photos to show!

  17. That is so crazy and awesome! What a GREAT story! I can't even believe it and I am so glad he is okay!

    p.s. now following!

  18. Wow! That's incredible and very scary.

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. **Sorry I had to delete my comment above, I was trying to do to many things at once***

    Oh my goodness!!! That's amazing (love the "Al Gore thanks"--- lol!!)!!! Great information if we have a stranded loved one in the future.... and YAY for your co-workers husband being rescued! I would so cook a big pot of mashed potatoes for them as thanks!! :)

  21. Gotta love technology! My co-worker had his cell phone stolen last week and he used the GPS tracker on the phone to track it down to almost an exact address. That might've worked in this situation too if he had that feature on his cell phone.

  22. That is one of the most amazing stories I've heard in a long time - thanks so much for sharing. It's amazing how many lives our one little life touches. Kind of like "It's a Wonderful Life" message, you know? What great reminder...
    And, I'm so glad your friend's husband got through it all! What an ORDEAL! I'll bet they're saying a thanksgiving prayer or two this morning!!!

  23. Awesome! I love stories like that. To see how wonderful people can be sometimes instead of how terrible things are when reported by the news!! Thats awesome mama m.. gave me the warm fuzzies

  24. Who knew Google Earth could be used like that? Have to keep that in mind!

  25. Great story!! I love the "Minnesota Nice" way of living. :) My family has been stranded at their house (in southwestern MN) for days now... not fun. Sounds like it has been quite the storm.

  26. Praise God for a wonderful ending!!!

  27. Just wanted to let you know you have an award waiting for you. :) Here's the direct link:

    Happy Saturday!

  28. What a great story! I knew Google Earth had more uses than my 8th grade students using it to look at Area 51 and the moon.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.

    And yes, you do "need' those Friends DVD's.

  29. That is such a great story and read! I love knowing that there are still people out there that are willing to go out in the cold, risk their own lives, and help a stranger, that if hurt, or God forbid worse, wouldn't make a difference to them, only it does and that is why they do it.
    I have the best neighbors, who will give the shirt off their back to someone in need, and many many times they have helped us out and they will never know how much I appreciate them, even though I thank them constantly for being such great neighbors!

  30. Thanks for stopping by my blog! It's so fun to connect with people through blogland! I love it! What an amazing story! I can't imagine being stuck like that but glad he was rescued!

  31. I see a Lifetime movie!! Thank goodness hes ok!!

  32. They took our internet access away at work because we spent too much time on there. Too bad we could be saving people too. GRRR!

  33. Awesome, inspiring story. Imagine how much good could be done in the world if only people took the time to help others, even if it inconveniences them for a bit! Those neighbors have sowed some wonderful seeds, and your friend that was rescued is now home safe and sound due to some incredibly self-less people. Kudos to your co-workers and yourself who worked so hard to help your co-worker. :o)

  34. Now that is the best story of the week! How wonderful that people were willing to do that during nasty weather.

    So glad that he is okay!!

  35. Wow! I missed this when you first posted it! Great story! Awesome ending!

    Blessings & Aloha!

  36. Wow...God is good!

    My Great Uncle died that way many many years ago. He was in his 30's and left a young wife and kids. He lived in Iowa, was stranded in a snow storm. He was kind and took in a hitch hiker who was soaked. He ran his heater to warm up the wet man. His tail pipe,unknown to him, was covered by the snow. They died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

    I'm glad that scenario was not repeated. I'm very glad the internet is accessed by everyone these days and that we now have something such as Google Earth.

  37. oh wow!! You don't hear stories like this often! SO cool! Thank the Lord!!


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