State trooper saves kayaker's life in Spencer County

ISP Trooper Kaitlyn Greene

SPENCER COUNTY, Ind. (WTHR) — An Indiana State Police trooper, with the help of two good Samaritans, saved a kayaker's life in Spencer County Tuesday.

Police say Trooper Kaitlyn Greene was patrolling Orchard Road near CR 400 North when the kayaker's wife flagged her down. The woman's husband was nearly submerged in the water, hanging onto a metal culvert pipe.

Greene arrived to find the man only able to keep his head and arms above water, with his legs and torso underwater, pulled into the culvert.

The trooper, who is an underwater search and rescue diver, grabbed her life jacket and water rescue throw bag and headed toward the kayaker. She was unable to get her life jacket on the man, but was finally able to get her throw bag's rope under his arms and around his back.

Afraid the man wouldn't be able to hold on for much longer due to fatigue, Greene was met by two passing motorists who stopped to help. She had one of the motorists hold the rope that was secured around the victim, while the other held her so she wouldn't fall into the water herself.

Greene got the man out of the water and treated him for cold water exposure until medics with Spencer County EMS could arrive to assist. The medics treated the victim and released him at the scene.

The kayaker's wife said they were kayaking in a field that had been flooded by recent rains when her husband's kayak was swept into the culvert.

State police say Greene, who scratched her hand on the culvert pipe during the rescue, is a three-year veteran of ISP. She completed her dive training in May 2016.