It was a chaotic scene when a group of men playing flag football saw a car plunge into a lake.
The group was playing flag football on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon when somebody yelled that a car had plummeted into the water.
“It was about 2 p.m. It was a regular day,” said Sean Battles, a referee. “I was reffing the game and one of the guys pointed over here saying there was a car in here.”
“I don’t think anybody even knew the guy,” one of the players told WJXT-TV. “We just sprung into action and wanted to get this man to safety.”
Player Abereon Brown said the whole time he was thinking, “Save him. Honestly, just save him.”
But the group struggled to open the doors, and one player had to go through the trunk to get the man trapped in the vehicle out. Once inside the vehicle, the player had another problem, the driver didn’t want to come out and refused to let go of the steering wheel.
According to one of the players, the man did not wish to be rescued and wanted to die.
“He didn’t wanna come out. He had a hold of that steering wheel so we were just sitting there fighting. I know he didn’t wanna let go he was telling us to let him go, but we just couldn’t let the at happen,” player Justin Johnson said.
“We’ve got you. It’s okay, it’s okay,” they told the driver.
The players also have a message for the man that they rescued.
“That we love you. Come out here and play with us. We’re a family. We don’t judge nobody,” Johnson said.
“I would love to meet the guy, honestly. Just to let him know that there are people out here who care. Come out here every Saturday. We’ll open our arms to you, no problem,” another player said.
The men who spoke with News4JAX wanted the man and his family to know that they love him and are praying for him.
Update: Local news reported that one of the players has spoken with the man’s family, and he is expected to make a recovery.