Tampa Bay Sports Day

WEEKEND: In the Nick of Time: FIU First Baseman Helps to Save a Life



Back home in Arizona for the summer, FIU first baseman Nick Day was making the 30-minute drive from Goodyear to Peoria last Sunday morning to meet his father for batting practice.

Day took Arizona State Route 303, one of the more busy highways in the state, to get to Peoria. It seemed like a typical drive on the 303 for Day until he spotted a small SUV suddenly start to flip in the median. The car rolled down into the median of the 303 and Day had only one thought.

“I didn’t think anything other than that I have to help,” Day said.

Day pulled his truck over to the side of the highway and rushed to help the three people in the SUV. Another driver also stopped to help as well.

When Day and the other driver reached the SUV they found a woman, who complained of her leg being hurt. The driver of the SUV was not hurt but the third passenger, a heavy-set man, had his arm severed below the elbow.

With blood flowing from the severed arm, the other driver suggested to use a wrench and a shirt to make a tourniquet. Day thought a tire iron would work better. So Day used his tire iron and a t-shirt to make a tourniquet and with help from the other driver managed to slow the bleeding from the arm.

Goodyear police officer Mike Miller, who was off-duty that morning, pulled over after Day and the other driver had applied the tourniquet. Moments later, a number of Goodyear police officers and the paramedics arrived to tend to the three people in the accident.

Day’s hands as well as the other driver’s hands were covered in blood after securing the makeshift tourniquet. Officer Miller handed them gloves and materials to clean their hands.

“When I arrived on the scene Nick and the other driver had made the tourniquet and had saved that man’s life,” Miller said. “I’m so proud of Nick because he jumped in there and did what he could to help. I was kind of impressed how they made a tourniquet out of a tire iron and a t-shirt.”

Day, who is a sports management major, does not have any kind of medical training even though his girlfriend, Courtney is a nursing major. However, Day and Courtney have never talked about anything related to nursing. Still, Day knew he had to do something last Sunday morning.

“We had to stop the bleeding,” Day said. “I was shocked when I first got on the scene. Once I saw the arm the shock kind of went away and I knew I had to help the guy. Looking back I’m glad I stopped to help because if not that guy probably would have died.”

This summer Day wasn’t supposed to be in Arizona. Instead, Day was going to be playing summer baseball in California. But in FIU’s season finale loss to Marshall, Day tore tendons in his right hand and would not be able to play summer ball.

So Day went back home to Arizona for the summer and took eight weeks for his hand to heal. He was medically cleared last Friday to resume baseball activities.

Officer Miller, who coached his son Zach and Day in kids travel ball in Arizona, had not seen Day for a few years until last Sunday at the scene of the accident and could not have been more proud.

“Nick was a goofball who we would give cheeseburgers to and told him to go hit home runs,” Miller said. “He has always been a good kid and he more than showed that last Sunday.”