Aug. 31 2017 03:00 AM

In Overland Park, Kansas, last week, a family was stranded on the safety of their roof, due to rising flood waters, and authorities couldn’t reach them for evacuation. Spencer Sherf was watching news coverage of the problem with his boss at Stonehenge Landscape & Exteriors across the river in Blue Springs, Missourri, and decided to do something. His employer, Cyrus Dawson turned to him and asked, “Do you want to participate in a rescue mission?” and Sherf replied, “Let’s do it.”

Dawson had bought a surplus military-cargo truck for his business, the Oshkosh Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Truck (HEMTT), which stands nine feet tall, and has 52-inch tires. They piled life jackets and a ladder into the truck, and went to ask firefighters if they could help. “At first, they were not going to let us go through,” Sherf said. “So, we snuck around to the back side of the neighborhood.”

The HEMTT was unaffected by the four-foot deep floodwaters, and before long, the pair were helping the family down off the roof. “They were excited to get out of there,” says Sherf. They had been waiting for eight hours, and the kids were getting hungry. Dawson described the HEMTT as very capable, and said he knew it would get the job done. “I think Fire and Rescue ought to have them,” he said.