A landscaper who had saved a police officer’s life, heroically pulling him out of his burning patrol car, died only 17 days later — ironically, on almost exactly the same spot where the rescue took place.
According to a story published on the Click2Houston website, it was Christmas Eve when Juan Carlos Salgado came upon the Houston intersection where a Chevy Tahoe police cruiser was aflame. He then singlehandedly pulled Officer Alonzo Reid out of the vehicle. Reid's partner, Officer John Daily, was seriously injured in the accident, which police say was caused by a drunken driver who fled the scene but was later arrested.
Salgado, who was walking home, heard the accident and rushed toward the burning vehicle, according to neighbors.
"How am I going to leave a person in need? We're all people," Salgado said in an interview the day of the accident.
Just 17 days later, while crossing Telephone Road near Red Robin Lane at 6 p.m. in the evening, Salgado was struck by one car, then a second. The 41-year old died in virtually the same spot where he’d performed the heroic rescue.
Police said that it looked as if Salgado had attempted to cross the wide, dimly lit road outside of the crosswalk. Controlled intersections and crosswalks are relatively far apart in this neighborhood, and residents say walking safely around there is difficult. In addition, several streetlights in the area do not appear to be working.
The drivers who struck and killed Salgado were questioned at the scene and released, according to the Houston Police Department.
Family members say Salgado will be buried in Mexico.