Last month when a bomb cyclone hit Sidney, Nebraska, Riley Jo Fischer and her husband Dustin were terrified. Riley was in labor, and the family had piled into their car and was on their way to the hospital along with their 3-year-old son.
The conditions were white-out, roads were closed and there were enormous gusts of wind. What made the Fischer's situation even more stressful was that Riley was not expected to give birth for another 12 weeks.
But little Edwin Fischer had other plans, and after the family was rescued on the roads and taken by law enforcement to the hospital, he arrived later that night in a small Nebraska hospital weighing just over three pounds. Unfortunately, the hospital was not equipped to properly care for the premature infant, but due to the weather, it was too dangerous to transport him to a hospital that could.
That's when Logan County, Colorado Deputy Casey Swingle stepped up to the plate in a big way.
Edwin desperately needed lifesaving medication - a medication the Nebraska hospital did not have. Due to his early arrival, his lungs had not fully developed and this medication would help save his life. Fortunately, Sterling Regional MedCenter - a facility nearby in Colorado - did. Swingle immediately jumped in his car, picked up the medication, and headed towards the Nebraska state line.
“I’m a father of three kids,” he said, recalling the events. “It was kind of one of those things. If I can make a difference, I can do it.”
It was touch and go for Swingle, with wind gusts up to 70 mph.
"I don't really know how I made it up there," he said.
But he did.
After meeting a Nebraska deputy at the border who took the medicine the rest of the way, Swingle hit the road once more with the storm still raging. Unable to properly navigate the inclement weather, his truck was blown off the road and into a ditch. Swingle ended up being stuck for six hours before he was rescued by the Colorado Department of Transportation.
Fortunately, Swingle was okay, and thanks to his quick thinking, so was baby Edwin. Edwin received the lifesaving medication that night and the next day was flown to Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children in Denver where he has remained.
The family and the doctors involved in Edwin's care have expressed their heartfelt gratitude for the two deputies who braved the storm to help Edwin.
"It was amazing," said Riley.
The Fischers currently have a GoFundMe established to help with Edwin's medical expenses.