Originally published in Charlotte Sun (Port Charlotte, FL) – Saturday, May 4, 2013
PORT CHARLOTTE — The owners of Covertrends, a flooring business in Port Charlotte, like to keep the store quiet. Eerily quiet, with no white noise from a radio and no one talking on a phone in the background.
Unless there is a customer in the flooring shop, one could hear a pin drop.
But Thursday afternoon, co-owner Chad Wilson’s soundless office was filled with the screams of a neighbor in trouble.
Judy Massing, 63, owner of Massing Sheds & Garages, was facedown in the dirt outside her business, screaming for someone to help her after she got trapped under a tractor with a front-end loader.
Wilson heard the woman’s screams and came out to see what happened.
‘She was pinned from her ribs and her neck under a 15,000-pound tractor ,’ Wilson said.
Wilson immediately called 911, then ran to get a jack from one of his work trucks. He and Massing’s husband, Larry Massing, jacked the trailer up off her.
‘We didn’t want to touch her because it was obvious that she was injured, but we relieved the pressure and she stopped screaming, so I think it helped,’ Wilson said.
Wilson said Judy was using the tractor to move one of the sheds located on the property. He said when she went to unhook one of the chains, the back wheel knocked her to the ground, ran over her and then hit the shed, pinning Judy under the front wheel of the vehicle. The tractor eventually stalled out, but Judy still was trapped underneath.
Charlotte County Fire/EMS responded to the scene around 3 p.m. Wilson said a rescue team jacked the trailer up farther, then loaded Judy on a stretcher.
A helicopter landed on Toledo Blade Boulevard between U.S. 41 and State Road 776, and Judy was airlifted to Blake Medical Center in Bradenton with serious injuries, according to Dee Hawkins-Garland, Fire/EMS spokeswoman.
Greg Summerall, who works for the Massings, said Judy suffered a broken collar bone, broken ribs, a broken pelvis and a partially collapsed lung.
‘She is in (the) ICU, but she’s doing fine,’ Summerall said. ‘She will probably want to come back to work Monday — that woman is tough.’
Trina Casa, owner of the building, 929 Tamiami Trail, where Covertrends is located, said Judy was lucky Wilson likes to sit in silence.
‘She is just so lucky he was here and likes the quiet,’ she said. ‘There was no one else to hear her.’