Gurnee Police Officer Kassandra Canadzic rescues an unresponsive driver from a vehicle that caught on fire after it struck the rear of the officer’s squad car on southbound Route 41 just north of Route 120 in Gurnee on November 9, 2023. | Provided Photos

Officers and bystanders are set to be awarded for saving the lives of two victims in separate crashes in Gurnee, one of which was captured on bodycam where an officer rescued a trapped driver from a fiery crash.

The Gurnee Police Department and Gurnee Fire Department are set to recognize the efforts of the four bystanders and officers during the Gurnee Village Board Meeting on Monday evening.

Registered nurse Lisa Rivera, Nicholas Lunsford and Winnebago County Sheriff’s Deputy William Eichholtz will be honored for their actions following a crash that occurred around 7:45 a.m. on November 1.

Gurnee Police Department Public Information Officer Shawn Gaylor said a 2008 Chrysler minivan and a 2019 BMW X3 were involved in a minor collision at Route 132 and Lawson Boulevard in Gurnee.

A 44-year-old Gurnee woman exited the BMW to inspect the damage before officers arrived, Gaylor said.

[Suggested Article]  'Pain, anguish and loss': Family to donate money to charity in honor of worker killed in fall from roof of Gurnee home

She was standing between the back end of the BMW and the front bumper of the Chrysler when a third vehicle, a 2009 Nissan sedan, collided with the back of the Chrysler.

Gaylor said the collision pinned the 44-year-old woman between two cars and left her with severe injuries.

Rivera, Lunsford, and Eichholtz stopped and rendered first aid after noticing the woman lying on the pavement.

Eichholtz, who was on his way to training, came upon the crash and applied tourniquets to both of the woman’s legs to control the bleeding while being aided by the two others.

Rivera, Lunsford and Eichholtz were all on their way to work and “demonstrated remarkable composure and medical expertise, [and] swiftly assessed the gravity of the situation,” Gaylor said.

“Collaborating seamlessly, they applied tourniquets to control the injured woman’s bleeding, ensuring her stability until officers and paramedics arrived,” Gaylor said.

[Suggested Article]  Coroner identifies 65-year-old man found dead after being struck by vehicle in North Barrington

Officers and paramedics arrived moments later to take over lifesaving measures.

The 44-year-old woman was transported by the Gurnee Fire Department to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville in critical condition.

In a second incident that occurred just before 11 p.m. on November 9, Gurnee Police Officer Kassandra Canadzic’s patrol car was rear-ended by a suspected drunk driver on Route 41.

Bodycam video released Wednesday showed Canadzic exiting her squad after calling for help.

She rushed to check on the occupants of the other vehicle, which had caught fire during the collision.

“Despite the flames intensifying, Officer Canadzic managed to rescue an unresponsive female from the burning vehicle, coordinating efforts with a bystander to unbuckle the seatbelt and carry the driver to safety,” Gaylor said.

“With swift actions, she ensured the well-being of the passengers and cautioned others to stay clear of the escalating danger,” Gaylor said.

[Suggested Article]  19-year-old man flown to hospital in critical condition after 3-car crash on Route 14 near Woodstock

Canadzic, Rivera, Lunsford and Eichholtz will all be recognized during the Monday board meeting, which the public is invited to attend.