College sophomore Bryce Kenning was northbound on his way to Bellingham to a hockey game Thursday when the Intestate 5 bridge over the Skagit River fell in front of his eyes.
The 20-year-old slammed the brakes and could see the edge of the pavement, but there was nothing he could do.
His car nosedived into the river and he was submerged in up to his waist.
"It was just a straight nose dive into the water. I had a tight grip on the steering wheel,” said Bryce Kenning.
"The first thing I tried to do is get out of my driver’s side door. It wouldn’t open. It was completely submerged,” he said. “Second thing … the windshield. I tried to kick it out and that was almost completely submerged in water too.”
“Last ditch effort was the passenger side door and I just cranked on the handle... gave it a kick as hard as I could and was able to crawl out onto the top of the vehicle.”
It was a similar story from Dan Sligh. He and his wife were going southbound in their pickup pulling a trailer on a holiday camping trip.
Like Bryce, Dan's truck was filling up with water. His wife's side filling up faster.
"I unbuckled her. Moved her to my side, which had less water,” he said. “It was filling up deep inside the truck. I managed to get the driver’s side door somewhat opened."
Dan’s shoulder dislocated and his trailer shattered on impact. He popped his shoulder back into place and tried to keep calm.
"You talk miracles, whatever you call it. I have to pinch myself that I’m still alive,” he said.
Both men say they understand why their survival is being called a miracle.
Dan’s wife Sally is still in Skagit Valley Hospital. She is in stable condition.