Oct 26, 2010
Jamie Dixon Plays Role Of Hero In Auto Wreck

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Diane Robinson has no recollection of the automobile crash that left her hospitalized, but she had high praise yesterday for Pitt men’s basketball coach Jamie Dixon — even if he was hesitant to stand in the limelight for helping in the wreck’s aftermath.

“He’s my hero, Robinson, 48, of Zelienople said yesterday from her hospital bed at Allegheny General Hospital on the North Side. My kids want to hug him.”

Dixon was heading home Saturday night after practice and watching film at his Oakland office when the Ford Escape in front of him on Interstate 279 North swerved from the left lane across two lanes of traffic and slammed into a barrier. The sport utility vehicle rolled over before stopping near the McKnight Road exit, Dixon and police said.

“I saw the whole thing, Dixon said during a news conference yesterday at the Petersen Events Center. My initial thought was that nobody was going to survive.”

Several motorists, including a correctional officer, also stopped, Dixon said.

“I happened to be the first person there, because I was closest, he said.

Smoke poured from the SUV, which Dixon later learned was because the airbags deployed, but there were no flames, he said. The driver began kicking the windshield and seemed to be fighting to get out of the car, Dixon said.

The coach grabbed the busted windshield and pried it back, allowing the woman to escape.

The driver fled the scene after being extricated from the vehicle, state police said.

Dixon said he turned his attention to Robinson, who was unresponsive but breathing.

She came to, but she could not move, Dixon said. He stayed with her until emergency workers arrived minutes later.

Robinson said she went to Pittsburgh with a co-worker from a Warrendale convenience store and was headed home when the accident happened. The co-worker, who Robinson said was driving, called her at the hospital yesterday.

She said she’s in Pittsburgh, but she didn’t say where, Robinson said.

Robinson does not remember the crash. She said she suffered a concussion and two broken legs. Doctors have performed one operation, and Robinson expects more.

Robinson knows Dixon’s name and that he coaches at Pitt, but she did not know about his role in helping her until watching the news.

She said she will try to watch more Pitt basketball games.

Dixon suffered minor cuts to his hands but no serious injuries, he said. He had several small bandages on his fingers yesterday, in contrast to the heavy bandages paramedics used Saturday when his clothes were blood-stained.

He said his wife, Jacqueline, gave him no special treatment when he got home.

You’re soft, Dixon said his wife told him after seeing his cuts and scrapes.

His players also have delivered a number of light-hearted jokes aimed at his rescue efforts. Dixon said they joked that he might challenge their toughness this season.

Jamie jumped into a burning car, he said they told trainers. That’s tough.”

Dixon reiterated there was no fire.

“Somebody tried to make it sound like ‘Backdraft’ or something, he said, referencing the 1991 film.

Dixon said several people at the scene recognized him and kept referring to him as coach.”

“I did what anybody else, I think, in Pittsburgh would have done given the situation, Dixon said. I think a number of people would have done the same thing.”

Jamie Dixon Plays Role Of Hero In Auto Wreck

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Diane Robinson has no recollection of the automobile crash that left her hospitalized, but she had high praise yesterday for Pitt men’s basketball coach Jamie Dixon — even if he was hesitant to stand in the limelight for helping in the wreck’s aftermath.

“He’s my hero, Robinson, 48, of Zelienople said yesterday from her hospital bed at Allegheny General Hospital on the North Side. My kids want to hug him.”

Dixon was heading home Saturday night after practice and watching film at his Oakland office when the Ford Escape in front of him on Interstate 279 North swerved from the left lane across two lanes of traffic and slammed into a barrier. The sport utility vehicle rolled over before stopping near the McKnight Road exit, Dixon and police said.

“I saw the whole thing, Dixon said during a news conference yesterday at the Petersen Events Center. My initial thought was that nobody was going to survive.”

Several motorists, including a correctional officer, also stopped, Dixon said.

“I happened to be the first person there, because I was closest, he said.

Smoke poured from the SUV, which Dixon later learned was because the airbags deployed, but there were no flames, he said. The driver began kicking the windshield and seemed to be fighting to get out of the car, Dixon said.

The coach grabbed the busted windshield and pried it back, allowing the woman to escape.

The driver fled the scene after being extricated from the vehicle, state police said.

Dixon said he turned his attention to Robinson, who was unresponsive but breathing.

She came to, but she could not move, Dixon said. He stayed with her until emergency workers arrived minutes later.

Robinson said she went to Pittsburgh with a co-worker from a Warrendale convenience store and was headed home when the accident happened. The co-worker, who Robinson said was driving, called her at the hospital yesterday.

She said she’s in Pittsburgh, but she didn’t say where, Robinson said.

Robinson does not remember the crash. She said she suffered a concussion and two broken legs. Doctors have performed one operation, and Robinson expects more.

Robinson knows Dixon’s name and that he coaches at Pitt, but she did not know about his role in helping her until watching the news.

She said she will try to watch more Pitt basketball games.

Dixon suffered minor cuts to his hands but no serious injuries, he said. He had several small bandages on his fingers yesterday, in contrast to the heavy bandages paramedics used Saturday when his clothes were blood-stained.

He said his wife, Jacqueline, gave him no special treatment when he got home.

You’re soft, Dixon said his wife told him after seeing his cuts and scrapes.

His players also have delivered a number of light-hearted jokes aimed at his rescue efforts. Dixon said they joked that he might challenge their toughness this season.

Jamie jumped into a burning car, he said they told trainers. That’s tough.”

Dixon reiterated there was no fire.

“Somebody tried to make it sound like ‘Backdraft’ or something, he said, referencing the 1991 film.

Dixon said several people at the scene recognized him and kept referring to him as coach.”

“I did what anybody else, I think, in Pittsburgh would have done given the situation, Dixon said. I think a number of people would have done the same thing.”






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