The 38-year-old said she was driving her Volkswagen Jetta north on Sycamore Parkway through the intersection with Monument Drive just before 5 p.m. when an Acura sedan slammed into the passenger side of her Jetta.
“All I remember is crossing the street and hearing a big ‘Bam’ and a ‘Boom’ from the car hitting us,” said Jimenez, who was walking with a stiff neck Wednesday, Oct. 3. “I thought we flipped over, because my seat broke in the impact and I was lying on my back.”
It’s what happened immediately after the crash that made Jimenez feel “like everything was going to be fine.”
At least four good Samaritans rushed to the aid of Jimenez, her 2-year-old son, Isaac, and 18-year-old nephew, Brandon Wallace.
“I saw (my son) in the backseat just screaming and reaching out for me, so I immediately jumped out of the car and grabbed him,” she said. “I remember someone guiding me to the curb to have a seat. … Everyone started at that point to gather and start helping us.”
Jimenez remembers a young woman with a lip piercing and “beautiful long hair” getting ice to help the baby.
She also recalls “an older Hispanic lady” who went to the scene from a nearby residence.
“I saw her essentially run and take off, and she came back with a large bottle of cool water that I was trying to give the baby,” she said.
An older man “who was fit and had a little gray in his hair” assisted Jimenez’s nephew and also directed traffic around the crash.
The impact caused Jimenez’s trunk to pop open, strewing her work papers across the road.
“This older woman grabbed my work laptop, and I remember her coming to me and feeling the warmth of her saying, ‘We have your laptop, we will take care of it, I promise you that,’” she said. “I remember her trying to give me her name, but unfortunately because the baby was crying so much, I couldn’t get it.”
Taken to the hospital shortly after the crash, Jimenez was unable to get the names of her helpers.
Jimenez and her son suffered minor cuts and bruises. Her nephew, Brandon, was wearing a neck brace Wednesday.
“I’m OK, but it’s just so I don’t move my neck too fast and hurt it,” Brandon said.
Jimenez was grateful for the support of police and firefighters who also responded. But she wanted to thank those who “stopped their lives to help someone in a tragic event.”
She walked through the crash scene Tuesday hoping those who helped would recognize her and she could deliver such homage.
“I would thank them and tell them that God gave them a gift of love and compassion, and that I saw that and I would tell them how much I appreciate it,” she said, tears forming in her eyes. “It helped me get through that time. I want to somehow reach out to the community to thank them from me and my family and say that I can’t express my appreciation for what they did.”
• Contact Joel Danoy at 830-4229 or firstname.lastname@example.org.