Man Crushed Under Car Meets His Hero

By Mark Stephens
|  Tuesday, May 18, 2010  |  Updated 7:43 AM EDT
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Man Crushed Under Car Meets His Hero

NBCWashington.com

Chris Larsen hugs Kathleen Murphy, one of the paramedics who helped save his life.

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Chris Larsen barely remembers the day he crossed paths with Kathleen Murphy, but the 21-year-old is sure of one thing: He owes her his life.

"All I can say is thanks," said Larsen. "She took a big part in trying to save my life and she succeeded."

Larsen was in Oxon Hill working underneath a car on Sept. 15, 2009, when it shifted.

"All I remember is the truck rolling up my leg," he said.

It landed on his rib cage. 

Paramedics rushed him to the Trauma Center at Prince George's County Hospital while they worked feverishly to stabilize him. Larsen suffered internal injuries that would require 19 different surgeries and 60 pints of transfused blood.

Emergency room physicians said the actions of Kathleen Murphy and her partner were life-saving. 

Monday, Murphy recieved an award for her actions from the Prince George's County Fire Department.  She also came face-to-face with Larsen for the first time since the accident.

"She's given me a second chance with my son," said Larsen's mother, Cynthia Mathieu, who thinks of Murphy as a hero.

It's a title the paramedic refuses to accept.

"This is our job. It's an everday thing," said Murphy. "It doesn't really sink in how much, you actually touch their lives and everything. To us, it's just a job."

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