Local man thanks good Samaritans who saved him, son from fiery crash

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A local man injured in a fiery crash on Saturday thanked the men who saved him and his son Monday.

Timothy Berry, 48, of Albany, is recovering at Albany Medical Center and spoke with NEWS10’s Anya Tucker. He wants to express his deepest appreciation to the men, Ludwick Branach and Wieslaw Szczutowski, both of Brooklyn, N.Y., who risked their own lives to save him and his son.

He says he was driving his 15-year-old son Jack to an afternoon baseball game when he suddenly passed out and lost control of his vehicle. The vehicle turned over and caught on fire. Berry was traveling southbound on the Delmar Bypass.

“That’s the last thing I remember until I woke up,” Berry said. “I was on my side and Jack was yelling. For that second, I wasn’t sure if we were going to get out. I could see the black smoke pouring from the cabin.”

Lutek Branach and Wieslaw Szczutowski rushed to the vehicle and were able to break out the windows and assist Berry and his son.

[All crash photos and video courtesy of Tom Heffernan]

Branach suffered a minor injury for breaking the glass and were treated and released from the scene.

First responders worked to put out the fire to prevent further danger.

First responders say if it wasn’t for the fast actions of Branach and Szczutowski, Berry and his son could have suffered serious injuries from the fire.

Szczutowski says they were joined by another driver, who still remains unknown. He says that good Samaritan worked on pulling Tim out of the minivan, while Branach busted out a window to free his son.

You don’t thunk of yourself as a hero? “I’m glad they are alive,” Szczutowski said. “This is the biggest reward for me.”

Szczutowski says he was glad to hear that Tim and his son are doing okay aside from a few bumps, bruises, and a broken finger.

Both Szczutowski and Branach were visiting the capital region on Saturday and happened to be driving behind Berry.

Berry says the doctors still don’t know what caused him to suddenly pass out, but they are doing tests.

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