Mathews, who said she had been driving near the driver’s vehicle since she’d passed Exit 16 in Canton, said she saw the truck gradually leave the roadway near the new interchange.
She said she thought Gonzalez had to pull over in a hurry, but said he “never slowed down or stopped.”
She said she witnessed the driver hit about three construction barrels, hit an 18-wheeler tractor trailer and then hit Goodwin.
After the vehicle struck Goodwin, Mathews said the driver veered his truck back into traffic and “gunned it.”
“There’s no way he couldn’t have known he hit someone,” she said, adding the driver appeared to be going the same speed as surrounding traffic and didn’t seem impaired behind the wheel.
Mathews said she immediately pulled over and rushed to Goodwin’s aid.
The construction worker was in “pretty bad condition,” adding his skin had turned blue from the lack of oxygen. With no medical equipment on her, Mathews said she was able to use basic skills to help save Goodwin’s life.
She was able to clear his airways and perform CPR to help him along. She said after two minutes, Goodwin’s skin complexion returned to normal and he was trying to breathe on his own.
Mathews’ efforts will be formally recognized by the Woodstock City Council during its June 18 meeting, and Mathews said the police department has nominated her for its Life Saving Award.
Mathews, 27, has been employed as an EMT with the Metro Atlanta Ambulance Service for the last four years.
She said she’s witnessed more accidents during her off hours than she and her co-workers are called to the scene to help provide medical assistance.
Mathews said while she’s “flattered and humbled” by the gratitude those in the city and others have expressed to her, she said she is more than eager to see Goodwin make a speedy and full recovery.
“That will be the true reward,” she said.