Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley where a side-by-side vehicle carrying five people went into the water on May 3, 2020 killing two children. (GoogleMaps)

Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley where a side-by-side vehicle carrying five people went into the water on May 3, 2020 killing two children. (GoogleMaps)

Good Samaritans help three people survive ATV accident at Foley Lake in Chilliwack

Two young children died, but if not for Joy Pringle and Hannah Reinholt, it could have been worse.

“Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley where a side-by-side vehicle carrying five people went into the water on May 3, 2020 killing two children. (GoogleMaps)

Two Good Samaritans are credited with helping to save three people at Foley Lake in Chilliwack Sunday afternoon.

While RCMP confirm two children, aged nine and 10, died in a tragic off-road vehicle accident, two adults and a third child survived, thanks in part to the quick thinking and calm actions of Joy Pringle and her friend Hannah Reinholt.

The women live in Squamish and came to Foley Lake to unwind, reconnect with nature and remember Joy’s sister Bekah, who died in a car accident in December of 2018 and whose birthday is this week.

Joy and Hannah had finished camping and were packing up to leave when a kid on a dirt bike rode up asking for help.

“He said there was an accident with a side-by-side (SxS ATV-style vehicle) that was in the water,” Joy said. “With limited information we ran 10 minutes up a hill, and as we arrived we saw that the side-by-side fell down a 100 foot embankment into the lake.”

Joy said she scrambled down the embankment and realized two kids were strapped in the submerged vehicle by seat belts.

READ MORE: Two children killed in ATV accident in Chilliwack River Valley

READ MORE: Two taken to hospital after midnight boat crash on Harrison Lake

“I grabbed a nearby belly boat, jumped on and swam to where I could see bubbles coming out,” she recalled. “I dove down and tried my best to find them. I had no light and it was dark and cold and all I could feel was the tires. It was too deep and really cold, and I realized I couldn’t rescue them.

“I realized I would be putting my life at further risk, and I’d be unable to hold my breath long enough to pull them out even if I did find them.”

An RCMP news release Sunday said the vehicle was 15 feet deep. Joy said the frigid water took her breath away, and her lungs were burning as she finally came up for air.

Three other people who were in the side-by-side were sitting on the embankment and they were in bad shape. Joy described them as “pretty pale/bluish” and she administered first aid. They huddled together, trying to stay warm, and as they did that Hannah scrambled up and down the steep embankment several times bringing towels, blankets, dry clothes and hand warmers.

“She was an angel,” Joy said. “She literally ran over giving the clothes off her back.”

The two women sent for help immediately, but it takes at least an hour to get back into an area where there is cellular phone service, and Joy said it was a three or four hour wait until emergency crews responded. When police, fire and search and rescue arrived, Joy helped set up tarps and stayed with the two adults, who were injured and needed to be taken by boat to a waiting helicopter.

”There were two fisherman that arrived first and were quick thinking as well,” Joy added. “They gave me jackets too, when I was shivering. We all worked together. Everyone took care of each other.”

The third child was able to make it up the embankment with help from Joy and one of the fishermen, and Hannah placed him in a Jeep that was running with the heat on. The child’s uncle and cousins were there to comfort him, and Hannah kept checking in one him while Joy went back down the embankment to comfort the parents.

“The mom didn’t want to leave her kids alone in the water and I promised her that I would stay with her two children until they were recovered by the police dive team/SAR,” Joy said. “I’m proud that I could give the family peace of mind that the kids were never alone.

“I’m sad that I couldn’t do more, but we did everything that we could.”

Joys’ efforts were noticed. An emergency responder who wished to remain anonymous had this to say.

“When we arrived we found the parents beside the lake being attended to by a lady from Squamish who had already begun preliminary first aid for them. She got them as warm and comfortable as possible under the circumstances and she attempted to try to reach the submerged children.

“This young lady did a tremendous job yesterday and she deserves some acknowledgement for her cool headedness and assistance in a very difficult situation.”


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

chilliwackSearch and Rescue

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

RCMP, BCEHS, Chilliwack RIver Valley FD, Chilliwack SAR all responded to a side-by-side ATV that plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. Two adults and one child were able to escape, but two other children died. (Shane MacKichan photo)

RCMP, BCEHS, Chilliwack RIver Valley FD, Chilliwack SAR all responded to a side-by-side ATV that plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. Two adults and one child were able to escape, but two other children died. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

The RCMP Dive Team was called in May 3, 2020 to assist with body recovery after two children died when a side-by-side ATV plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. (Shane MacKichan photo)

RCMP, BCEHS, Chilliwack River Valley FD, Chilliwack SAR all responded to a side-by-side ATV that plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. Two adults and one child were able to escape, but two other children died. (Shane MacKichan photo)

RCMP, BCEHS, Chilliwack River Valley FD, Chilliwack SAR all responded to a side-by-side ATV that plunged into Foley Lake in the Chilliwack River Valley on May 3, 2020. Two adults and one child were able to escape, but two other children died. (Shane MacKichan photo)

Just Posted

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
32 family members respond to Abbotsford care home’s plea for staffing help during COVID-19 outbreak

Menno Home asks for relief workers for food service, laundry and housekeeping

web pic
Police searching for missing Mission man

Mission RCMP are requesting the public’s assistance to locate missing person Michael Johannes Goetz

The Mission Candlelight Parade has been cancelled for a second time. The event will now take place virtually. / Submitted Photo
Candlelight Parade cancelled: Will now be a virtual event

Mission’s holiday tradition went from a parade, to a reverse parade and now an online video event

Christy Jordan-Fenton is the co-author of the book Fatty Legs, which has been mentioned amid the controversy of an Abbotsford school assignment on residential schools.
Fatty Legs co-author responds to Abbotsford class assignment on residential schools

Children’s book mentioned amid controversy at W. A. Fraser Middle School

The paraglider pilot, while attempting to free himself, dropped 30 feet and sustained serious injuries as Kent-Harrison Search and Rescue members worked quickly to extract him from the trees. They were able to get him to a waiting ambulance at the end of a nearby forest service road. (Contributed Photo/Dave Harder)
Lower Mainland Search and Rescue saves paraglider in treetop rescue

Pilot tried to self-rescue but sustained serious injuries in a 30-foot fall

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest weekend of COVID-19 pandemic with 46 deaths; more than 2,300 cases

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides COVID-19 update

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

Paramedics register patients at a drive through, pop-up COVID-19 test centre outside the Canadian Tire Centre, home of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators, in Ottawa, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020. A new poll suggests most Canadians aren’t currently worried that people in other countries might get a COVID-19 vaccine first. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Canadians not worried other countries will get COVID-19 vaccine first: poll

Forty-one per cent of respondents say they want the vaccine to be mandatory for all Canadians

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Kettle bells sit aligned in an indoor fitness studio. (PIxabay.com)
1 COVID-19 case at a B.C. fitness studio leads to 104 more infections, 6 school exposures

According to case data released by Fraser Health, one case of the novel coronavirus carries a big impact

Vehicles drive past a display thanking essential workers in Burnaby, B.C. on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
B.C. changing COVID-19 case reporting as virus spread continues

Manual counting takes more time, leads to errors

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Kootenay East MLA Tom Shypitka takes over as energy and mines critic for the B.C. Liberal opposition. Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick (right) moves from health critic to assistant deputy speaker. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals pick critics to take on Horgan’s NDP majority

Interim leader Shirley Bond takes seniors, long-term care

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver. (Black Press Media files)
Judge hears Langley development case that could end in mayor, councillors booted out of council

The conflict of interest case was launched by local voters a year ago

Most Read