IvyLee Rosario – News Editor –
What started out as the setting for a blizzard adventure video, said Jessica Kiska, quickly turned into a rescue mission by North Campus residence complex.
“Joe was talking and I started to hear someone crying. I look[ed] over by a snow bank and I [saw] this woman crying out for help,” said Jessica Kiska, 21, a community advisor who lives in North Campus.
On Friday, Feb. 8, during blizzard Charlotte, a woman got stuck in the snow near North Campus and was brought to safety by two community advisors, Jessica Kiska and Joseph Gervasio.
“That night we went out at around 11 p.m. and that was when the storm was getting even worse,” said Gervasio, 21. “We went outside and we must’ve been out there for around thirty seconds before we heard the moaning and screaming.”
Gervasio said they spotted the woman near the front parking lot by a snow bank and she was shaking.
“She told us her car broke down at work, and she got a ride from a co-worker but his truck broke down not far after,” said Gervasio. “She lives off of Wintergreen Avenue. so she thought she could walk and make it.”
The woman, who said her first name is Love, is supposedly a nurse at Yale-New Haven Hospital. She was seen to have been walking very slowly in baby steps, moaning. The woman walked all the way to North Campus from Fitch Street where her ride’s car broke down.
“She didn’t have any hat or gloves and was only wearing scrubs,” said Gervasio. “Those clothes aren’t warm at all so I can’t imagine how freezing she must’ve been.”
The police were called upon finding the woman but they got stuck on the travel through the blizzard. The woman spent the night in the office at North Campus.
“We got her some heating pads, and she put her hands over the heater,” said Kiska. “She said she couldn’t feel her fingers at one point so our first concern was to get her warmed up.”
Kiska said her first thoughts were to help because she didn’t understand where the woman came from.
“She was wearing a hoodie and it was so dark out, and her hair was in her face,” said Kiska. “My second thought was ‘who is she’ because it was so hard to tell if she was a student, but all she could say was ‘hands on fire.’”
Both Kiska and Gervasio said the response about the incident is weird for them because some people are calling them heroes.
“People kept telling us, ‘you saved that woman’s life’ but I just felt like it was our duty at the time to help someone,” said Kiska. “We were happy to help find her a safe place to stay for the night, I don’t even want to imagine what would’ve happened if we didn’t find her.”
It was both luck and good timing that led to helping the woman out of the blizzard, said Gervasio.
“It was one of those right place, right time moments,” said Gervasio. “I’m just glad we were there because she was out there for a while.”
The woman, Love, did not sustain any injuries from being stuck in the blizzard. She regained feeling in her hands about an hour after being brought into the building.
She stayed at North Campus for around twenty-four hours, said Kiska.
“We are relieved that she’s OK,” said Kiska, “and I’m just happy that we had the right timing that we did.”