A Gretna couple was injured Thursday, July 27, in an accident that occurred on Main Street around lunchtime.
According to Gretna Police Chief David Wilkes, Harry and Carrie Ellen Campbell, who live off of Cottonpatch Road, were traveling north on Main Street in their pickup truck, when Harry blacked out and ran off the road through the Farmers’ Market parking lot next to Carter’s Bank. The truck hit and knocked down a small tree before landing in a ravine that holds the Town’s water run off.
Gretna Rescue Squad, Gretna Fire Department, and Gretna Police Department responded to the scene, as well as several local citizens.
The couple’s daughter, Lisa Campbell Wood, wrote on Facebook afterwards that she wanted to find one particular woman who had stayed by her mother during the entire incident.
“Thanks to all the rescue personnel and nurses that assisted and cared for them both. Special thanks to a Ms. Younger who apparently saw the accident and ran to the truck and prayed non-stop for Mama as they tried to get her out,” said Wood. “My mom would like to find her and personally thank her when she’s able. IF anyone knows who this Ms. Younger is that was on Main Street Gretna today, please tag her or have her send me a private message.”
Wood later found out that the woman who had helped her mother was Joyce Younger, who lives in an apartment near the accident scene.
“Her grandson heard the wreck and told her, so she went to help my mama,” said Wood. “As disoriented as my mom was, she remembered that Younger was there and that she had prayed with her.”
The couple was initially taken to Gretna Centra Emergency Room, where Harry Campbell was “treated and released with a lumbar sacral sprain.”
“Mama wasn’t as lucky. She got banged up pretty good. Very bruised, disoriented, confused, and in extreme pain with nausea and vomiting. They are transferring her to Lynchburg General,” wrote Wood on Facebook.
According to Wilkes, during the accident, Carrie Ellen Campbell attempted to wake up her husband and move his foot off of the truck’s accelerator. He said the truck was “damaged pretty good” and that no charges would be filed in the accident.
Wood said Tuesday that her father, who is 78, was taking his wife to the beauty shop when the accident occurred.
“He is fine physically, but is emotionally really upset,” she said. “He’s not left her side since.”
She said the blackout may have been caused by a recent change in medication and that she believes he may have been trying to pull over into the parking lot.
Her mother, who is 83, is in a medically induced coma in the ICU unit at Lynchburg General Hospital.
She said that her mother has a lot of chest trauma and is on a ventilator.
“She pulled her seatbelt back and tried to grab the wheel,” said Wood, explaining that when the truck hit the tree and landed in the ravine, her mother was not restrained.
Mrs. Campbell had emergency surgery Saturday night to implant a device in her heart to make it pump at a higher rate. Wood said her mother’s heart was only functioning at 30 percent and her organs were starting to fail.
Despite being in the coma, Mrs. Campbell did “acknowlege a prayer”
when her cousin the Rev. R.G. Rowland prayed at her bedside.
Wood said it is lucky that the accident occurred on a day when there were no yard sales going on in the parking lot.
The Campbells, who have been married for 55 years, have three adult children, Wood of Danville and Jason Campbell and Susan Gammon, both of Gretna.