Six Year-Old Takes Wheel While Father Has Diabetic Shock

A 6-year-old boy grabbed the wheel of his family's pickup truck when his father passed out from low blood sugar, keeping the vehicle from crashing until an officer could bring it to a halt, police said.

Tustin Mains was in the back seat with his 3-year-old brother Sunday when his father, Phillip Mains, slumped over at the wheel, the boy told police. The family had been driving home from a restaurant.

"I remember getting up to about the mall — that was about 6:45," Mains told The North Platte Telegraph. "The next thing I remember was waking up to the officer and paramedics, and it was 8:15."

Tustin leapt into his father's lap so he could steer and see out the windshield. Mains' foot had slipped off the accelerator, but even at idle the Chevrolet Avalanche was going an estimated 10-15 mph, police said.

The kindergartner steered the truck several blocks, even turning around when he entered a neighborhood he didn't recognize, until he was spotted by police.

North Platte officer Roger Freeze ran up to the moving pickup, reached through an open window and rammed the gearshift into park.

Police Chief Martin Gutschenritter praised his officer and young Tustin.

"I will be issuing him a departmental citation for his quick, professional action on this case. That is also a very special young man. He was able to take quick action when his dad was incapacitated, and we are very proud of him, too," Gutschenritter said.

When he saw his dad "fall asleep," Tustin said, he got scared, then got another fright when officer Freeze appeared at the truck's window.

But when Freeze abruptly stopped the pickup?

"I was just happy," Tustin said.

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  • by John Location: Ayden on May 28, 2009 at 09:35 AM
    Great job, little man!
  • by Anonymous on May 27, 2009 at 07:49 AM
    Way to go Tusin. He looks so cute in that seat. You saved lives!God Bless you!!!
  • by Terris Location: kinston,nc on May 26, 2009 at 03:39 PM
    Very proud of you young man,Great job happy ending
  • by Chastity Location: Greene Co on May 24, 2009 at 02:06 PM
    Great job lil man!!! I am glad that you knew what to do! God was watching over your family that day.
  • by Mom on May 24, 2009 at 10:35 AM
    Great story! Good job, little man!
  • by Cactus Location: Strabane on May 23, 2009 at 03:05 PM
    Way to go young man, way to go. Let freedom ring.

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