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Culver honors local heroes

By Staff | Aug 16, 2008

DES MOINES – Melvin Halsrud, Scott Hofbauer, Chad Potratz, and Boyd Quastad were awarded the Governor’s Lifesaving Award for their heroic manner in helping save the life of Doug Schroeder.

The ceremony took place Friday, Aug. 8 at the Iowa State Fair.

On May 16, 2007, Doug Schroeder, of rural Estherville, was driving his front end-loader east on Hwy. 9 when he met his friend, Boyd Quastad. After a brief conversation, Schroeder turned his front-loader around to head back to his residence with Quastad.

All Schroeder remembers next was backing up and the end-loader rolling over on him. He felt a crushing feeling and his face buried in the dirt just before blacking out.

Three men, Melvin Halsrud from Estherville, Scott Hofbauer from Jackson, Minn., and Chad Potratz from Fenton, stumbled upon the accident.

All three gentlemen along with Quastad, took it upon themselves to lift the end loader off Schroeder.

Shortly thereafter, Emmet County Deputy Jeff Merrill arrived to see the four men holding the machine up off Schroeder. One of the men told him that Mr. Schroeder was not breathing.

Deputy Merrill noticed Schroeder was very ashen and cyanotic, but he had a pulse. After a few pressurized breaths, he noticed Schroeder was breathing and rolled him onto his side.

The ambulance arrived and took him to a nearby hospital. He was later life-flighted to a hospital in Sioux Falls, S.D. Schroeder suffered a punctured lung, rib fractures and contusions. He has recovered from his injuries, thanks to the work of the four men.