Good Samaritan describes pulling driver from wrecked car: ‘It would have crushed him’

An Ewa Beach man avoided being crushed to death after a Good Samaritan pulled him out of his flattened vehicle.

Ron Maganis still can’t believe the driver he saved survived the horrific crash, but nothing was broken. In fact, he says, the man went back to work three days later.

On Tuesday, Oct. 3, Maganis saw a semi-trailer truck hit a Lexus on Kunia Road.

“I saw smoke coming from the truck’s tires, the 18-wheeler,” Maganis said.

The car spun around and that’s when the Matson container landed on top of the Lexus.

“My heart immediately jumped out of my chest, and my adrenaline started pumping, and the first thing that came to my mind was, ‘That guy is dead,'” he said.

With the driver’s side flattened, Maganis tried to open the passenger door, but couldn’t. Then he noticed an opening in the sunroof.

“When I looked down into the sunroof, I saw two eyes staring at me, telling me, ‘I need help,'” he said.

Maganis says the driver was reclined and was able to move just far enough toward the passenger side to avoid getting crushed by the Matson container.

“How much space was there from the container?” KHON2 asked.

“Oh jeez, there was rarely any space at all, just enough for him to slide out. I think if he had stayed in the driver’s seat, it would have crushed him,” Maganis said.

With his adrenaline still pumping, Maganis was able to pry the passenger door open and pull the driver out. He wasn’t sure how safe it was because the truck had also knocked down some power lines.

Maganis says others who were there weren’t sure what to do.

“As I walked up, there was a woman crying behind me, and men staring down at the accident scene,” he said.

The driver had some cuts, but to everyone’s surprise, he was walking and didn’t seem badly hurt.

“He gave me the biggest hug afterward and he said, ‘You saved my life. I appreciate it,’ and he kept on thanking me, gave me about two three hugs, and I think someone was watching over him that day,” Maganis said.

Maganis shied away from being called a hero. He could have waited for paramedics and police officers to arrive, but he says he just couldn’t when someone needed help and right away.

“I guess when your adrenaline is rushing and you start thinking about other people and what they could be going through, for me, there was no second choice. I just went and did it,” Maganis said.

KHON2 spoke with the driver, who didn’t want to go on camera.

He says he’s recovering from the cuts and bruises, and above all else, he’s grateful for what Maganis did.

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