Cable guys complete trio who saved trucker after Vail Valley accident |

Cable guys complete trio who saved trucker after Vail Valley accident

Dustin Racioppi
Avon, CO Colorado
NWS Truck Heros 1 DT 12-31-08

AVON, Colorado “-It wasn’t until after dragging Timothy Rooney out of his cab, laying him on the snow-covered ground in Avon and helping perform CPR on the 53-year-old’s lifeless body that Silverthorne resident Bradley Dorcas began to think, “Not again.”

A few years before, Dorcas was driving in Summit County and witnessed a man on a bicycle get hit by a car. Dorcas was the first on the scene and gave the man CPR, but the man later died.

“That affected me,” Dorcas, 39, said. “I always look back at that and say, ‘That sucked. That was very bad.'”

When Rooney suffered a massive heart attack Friday and his 18-wheeler skid across Interstate 70 into two sport-utility vehicles, Dorcas and co-worker Alan Sharp ” and off-duty East Vail firefighter Mike Malec ” were there to help.

The three met at the scene, went to work bringing Rooney to life and, then, when the ambulance and fire department showed up, Dorcas and Sharp left, Hollywood-like, with nobody able to get their names. Malec’s story was published in Wednesday’s Vail Daily, which prompted Comcast employee Chris Parker to out his fellow workers as the unknown volunteers whom Malec said were vital to helping Rooney survive. It was close, though, according to Sharp.

“He was blue as blue gets,” the 24-year-old Leadville resident said. “I’ve seen a few dead bodies, and he looked identical to them.”

Luckily for Rooney, all three men knew CPR. Malec is a firefighter and Dorcas and Sharp receive annual CPR certifications from Comcast along with weekly safety training.

“I thought, ‘Whatever it takes, let’s get this done,'” said Sharp, who was also a junior firefighter when he was younger.

Together, they did. Rooney was taken to Vail Valley Medical Center and later transported to The Medical Center of Aurora. His ex-wife, Mary Anttila, did not want to discuss the details of his condition but said, “He’s not going to have the life he had, but he’s alive.”

And, for that, Anttila said her family can’t thank the three men that pulled over Friday enough.

“If it wasn’t (for them), he’d be dead,” Anttila said. “My kids and myself are ever so grateful.”

For Anttila, the accident was both a tragedy and a miracle. Malec said Tuesday it was part of his duty. In Dorcas’ case, it was a visit from his past but with a happier outcome. For Sharp, it was the most surreal and rewarding experience in his life.

“Just knowing that guy’s living because of something you helped with, that’s a feeling you can’t beat,” he said. “It’s really cool to know that some guy may go home to his family again.”

Dustin Racioppi can be reached at 970-748-2936 or

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