Emporia man receives award after saving little girl in deadly crash

Local News

EMPORIA, Kan. (KSNT) – Idaira Jacobo is recovering after being in the same car crash on June 14 that killed her father, Diblain Jacobo.

KSNT News spoke with the mother of the three-year-old, and now widow, about the tragedy, and the hero that came to the rescue.

“I never thought he was going to tell me my husband died, and not knowing my daughter was okay, too,” said Camelia Alvino, wife to Diblain and mother to Idaira.

Diblain was driving with Idaira in the car around 8:00 p.m. that evening, just south of Emporia. He lost control of the vehicle and went into a ditch, crashing into a power pole.

The car then became engulfed in flames, and Diblain lost his life.

“I’m scared that she’s going to remember this. She’s going to remember seeing her dad,” Alvino said about her daughter.

Don Tevis, who lived nearby, heard the crash and discovered a horrific scene. Diblain was found laying on top of a crying Idaira, with flames surrounding them.

“The dispatcher told him, ‘If you think you can do it, and you want to do it, then try to get the little girl out of there,'” said Doug Stump, one of the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office patrol sergeants on scene of the crash.

That is what Tevis did. While dodging the power lines and fast-growing flames, he saved Idaira’s life.

“I just remember thinking that ‘Man, I hope the fire department has a good idea to get this little girl out of here because all mine aren’t very good ideas,’ and when we got there he had taken care of that for us,” Stump said.

KSNT News asked Tevis to speak with us about this experience, but he was too emotional to do so.

On Thursday, Tevis was given a Life Saving Award by the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office for the amazing thing that he did.

“I feel really blessed, like he was sent from God to be there, because I don’t know what I would have done if I would have lost her, too,” Alvino said.

Idaira has now fully recovered from the accident, and Alvino is hopeful one day she and her daughter can meet Tevis to thank him for what he did.

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