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Nurses save farmer’s life after tractor crash: ‘It’s just a miracle I survived’

AMELIA COUNTY, Va. -- Two nurses are being honored for saving an Amelia County man’s life after he was hit on his farm tractor on January 27.

Police say 80-year-old Lucy Gordon was traveling east on Route 360 when her Buick Sedan rear-ended the farm tractor in the right lane, causing it to run off the road to the right and hit a tree.

Lifelong farmer Wallick Harding was ejected from the tractor and laid lifeless on the side of the road across from his Hard Acres Farm.

Wallick Harding

“His palms were up his arms were tucked behind him and he was face down on the ground,” said nurse Melissa Cawley-Chambers.

Cawley-Chambers, an intensive care nurse, was behind the accident and came to Harding’s aid.

Moments later, her former co-worker, Brenda Fender, who is also a nurse pulled up on the scene.

“It’s a miracle,” Wallick Harding said through tears.  “The fact that they were there at that time, that they had worked together for six years, haven’t for three... going in different directions and they were both right there.”

Melissa Cawley-Chambers, Brenda Fender, Wallick Harding

“There was no abrasions, no blood, there was just someone who wasn’t breathing who had no pulse,” said nurse Brenda Fender.

“By the time Brenda and Melissa got there she said I only had a few minutes left I was already turning blue,” said Harding.

“I wouldn’t have made it without them. They’ll be forever a part of our family.”

“I checked for a pulse... couldn’t get a pulse and I started CPR and almost simultaneously, when I started CPR Brenda was there and we just rotated out,” said Cawley-Chambers.

The pair brought Wallick back to life before he was flown to the hospital and treated for a stroke and trauma.

Wallick Harding

“God used us. We didn’t just get to witness a miracle. We got to be part of one,” said Fender.

“Heroes, angels they’ll always be my angels always,” said Harding.

“This is one of the most rewarding experiences ever seeing him doing so well,” said Cawley-Chambers.

Harding suffered trauma and a stroke.

He has a long road ahead but is in weekly therapy. He hopes to get back to work on the farm by fall harvest.

Wallick Harding

Harding also credits his late father for his life.

“Our dad built that [tractor] canopy and it kept the car from coming up on me,” said Harding.

Fender and Cawley-Chambers were recognized by the Amelia County Sheriff’s office and the American Legion for their life-saving actions.

Gordon was charged with following too close. She was treated for serious injuries.