Woman pulled from burning car calls officer her angel

It was a nightmare come to life for one Spokane woman as she sat in her car that was on fire feeling helpless.

Kimberly Novak was on her way back home from a quick trip to the store to get ice cream when she drove over an icy patch that had refrozen. All of a sudden, her car shut off and nothing worked anymore. Smoke started to rise from the hood of the car and then flames. Novak tried to get out of the car, but the locks wouldn’t even work manually.

“I've never been so terrified in my life,” she says. “Between that and the smoke I didn't know what was going to get me first.”

But then, Officer Tim Schwering with the Spokane Police Department came to her rescue. He would not give up, using his baton to break the window. He and a neighbor helped pull Novak out of her car to safety.

Novak is forever grateful. That’s because she says Officer Schwering went “above and beyond” the call of duty. She says he stayed by her side, despite the flames coming up on his arm, working to break the window.

“Right now I'm really blessed. It's humbling to think it can happen that fast without any warning,” she says.

So now, Officer Schwering is her angel, her hero, and her new best friend.

“He's going to get tired of me in this life because he's going to know me forever now,” she says.

A nightmare turned into a friendship after Officer Schwering did what he does best – protect and serve and the community he loves.