Utah rescuers outside the Salt Lake City area rescued a toddler stuck in a submerged car for 13 hours after claiming to hear a mysterious voice asking for help.
According to Susanna Kim of ABC News, three police officers and two firemen rescued the baby from the partially submerged car, which was upside down when it was discovered on Saturday. The baby's mother, 25-year-old Lynn Jennifer Groesbeck, did not survive the crash.
"To me, it was plain as day," officer Jared Warner of the Spanish Fork City Police Department said. "I remember hearing a voice that didn't sound like a child, just saying, 'Help me.'"
In addition to Warner, officers Tyler Beddoes and Bryan DeWitt also heard the mysterious voice. They ended up rescuing 18-month-old Lily Groesbeck, who is now in stable condition according to ABC News.
Groesbeck's family talked with Ben Brumfield of CNN about the latest status of the rescued baby, who was barely alive when the police found her.
"Her improvement is astounding. Right now she's watching 'Dora (the Explorer)' and singing '(The) Wheels on the Bus' with Grandpa," a family member said to CNN. "She is smiling and laughing for family members. We're blown away by Lily's progress and so grateful to her rescuers."
Spanish Fork Police officer Lt. Matt Johnson elaborated to ABC News on how the rescue occurred.
"There were some individuals on top of the bridge, but all three stated [the voice] came from the vehicle," Johnson said. "It prompted us to lift the car between the three officers and firemen. They physically lifted the car from the side, and they located the infant in the car seat at that time."
Johnson indicated that the police involved in rescuing her thought the mysterious voice did not originate from the baby, describing her condition to ABC News.
"Due to the trauma she sustained, we suspect she was deceased upon impact," Johnson said. "I don't believe she survived the impact of the car crash. There was massive trauma."
Brumfield reported that the water temperature was so cold that seven of the men involved in the rescue operation had to be treated for hypothermia. DeWitt's memory of the event, which started after a fisherman found the car wheels-up in the Spanish Fork River, was a blur to him.
"I don't remember doing anything but just doing it," DeWitt said.
CNN senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen believed that the baby survived thanks to her car seat, which appeared to be properly attached.
"Even though the child was trapped and upside down, her body remained in the seat and above the frigid water," Brumfield wrote. "Doctors say that such low temperatures are dangerous, but would be even more so if the baby were wet."
Cohen added that dry cold temperatures were more survivable than wet cold temperatures. In addition, she argued that the presence of "baby fat" contributed to her survival.
"It's a reminder that the human body is tough," Brumfield wrote. "Lily apparently survived for 14 hours in extreme cold, without food or drink."
According to CNN, police have been unable to explain how the wreck happened. There were no skid marks on the road, and neither alcohol nor drugs played a role.
However, Beddoes credited the mysterious voice for helping to rescue the trapped baby.
"All I know is that it was there, we all heard it, and that just helped us to push us harder, like I say, and do what we could to rescue anyone inside the car," Beddoes said on CNN.