Elderly man rescued by Entergy airboat

Local News
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YELL COUNTY, Ark.- An Entergy crew rescued a 93-year-old man who was stranded in floodwaters. 

According to a Facebook post on Wednesday from Entergy Arkansas, Leon Payne of Russellville was trapped on Highway 154 East near Danville on Sunday. 

Entergy Arkansas says Payne had no cell phone, so he waited for hours until farmer J.R. Cross saw him while recovering livestock. 

Cross picked Payne up and drove until the tractor they were in could not cross, according to the Facebook post. Cross then called 911. 

Members of the Yell County Mounted Patrol and a Yell County deputy responded, but did not have a way to the men. 

Entergy officials say an emergency responder tracked down Line Supervisor Shawn Morris and Serviceman Brad Reddin, who had been airboating across the floodwaters nearby looking for damaged poles and disconnected powerlines.

Morris and pilot Ian Comeaux boated to Payne and took him to the shore, officials say. 

The post goes on to say a Yell County deputy drove Payne home. 

Reddin was told Tuesday morning that Payne was resting comfortably at home. 

“Out here in the small communities we serve, we take care of each other,” said Reddin. “We have electricity-related work to do, but we’ll always stop and help someone in trouble. It’s who we are, and I appreciate Entergy encouraging us to take action when confronted with a challenge like this one.”

“This flood has been catastrophic for the River Valley area that we serve,” said Morris. “I’m really proud of our team during this crisis. They sincerely care about the customers, who are their neighbors and their families, and they’d do just about anything to help. And when you have an elderly man surrounded by floodwaters and we have an airboat, you can bet we’re going to get involved.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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