Good samaritan tells how he helped save driver

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)- Even if you’re not a not a big believer in the concept of fate, the series of events that played out on Delaware Avenue in North Buffalo on Saturday morning could be enough to make you wonder.

Buffalo Police Accident Investigators say that it happened around 9:00 a.m., when a driver lost control of his car and the car jumped a curb and crashed into the bridge abutment of the 198 overpass.

At that moment, Jonathan Dececco was riding to work on a NFTA bus. As the bus rounded the curve of Delaware Avenue, Dececco saw the car in the road, starting to catch fire.

After that, Dececco said, he wasn’t thinking. He was simply reacting.

“I got off the bus to try to help him, and I noticed his doors wouldn’t open. So the next thing that came to my head was to turn off the fire. So I ran on the bus and grabbed the fire extinguisher, and I started spraying it all over the car,” Dececco told News 4 later Saturday.

“I was trying to tell him not to move, because he started moving and I didn’t know if his neck was messed up or not.”

Dececco says gasoline was leaking everywhere.

“I’m scared as hell that the whole car would’ve blew up,” he recalled.

Buffalo Police and firefighters arrived within minutes. Firefighters had to extricate the seriously-injured young man from the car.

Dececco said he was so focused on what he was doing that it wasn’t until hours later, when friends began flooding his Facebook account with messages, that he realized he knows the man whose life he helped save. He’s been friends with the young man’s brother, and known their entire family, since childhood.

“It’s just crazy. It’s like God put me that spot, at the right time,” Dececco said. “I’ve talked to his sister and his brother. Right now, he’s like calling me a guardian angel, like I saved his brother’s life. And he’s talking about, he owes me. He don’t really owe me nothin’. I’m just being a Good Samaritan, that’s all.”

Delaware AccidentThe irony doesn’t end there. The reason Dececco was riding that bus was because he missed the bus he usually takes, just a few minutes earlier.

“I’m just proud to be there when I was, to save him. It’s a good thing. It’s a good feeling,” Dececco said.

“I just pray, if someone [had] seen me in that predicament, they’d do the same thing. Out of the kindness of my heart, I see someone in trouble, I’m going to help them,” he said.

The cause of the accident remains under investigation.

The victim, identified only as a man from Buffalo in his early 20s, was taken to ECMC. Dececco says he has heard from the family that the young man has undergone several surgeries already.

“I just hope everything’s okay with him. I hope he comes out walking, and fine,” Decceco said. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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