KENT, Washington — Chanler McPherson forgot his wallet at work. This simple mistake was one he'll never forget.

He was heading back to work on Highway 167 near Kent. 

"I noticed on the right side of the highway that there was a car just sitting there," said Chanler. "It was all busted up like it had just crashed recently."

Chanler's intuition told him to investigate further. As soon as he got up to the scene, he saw broken glass, deployed airbags, and a crumpled car. Then, 50 feet away, he found the driver.

"She didn't look alive," said Chanler. "Not at all. She wasn't moving or anything. There was just so much blood, it was like how could someone be alive after that terrible accident." 

But 22-year-old Megan Parish was alive, just barely. McPherson called 911 and urged her to hang on. 

"I just stayed there with her the entire time. I was just talking to her. I found her ID right next to her so I knew her name and I was able to comfort her as much as I could," said Chanler. "I had a blanket over her to keep her warm. 

Chanler had found Megan just in time. On the way to the hospital, Megan's heart stopped - twice. 

Megan was every bit as mangled as her car. She suffered from 15 broken ribs, two collapsed lungs, a lacerated liver, a shattered ankle, and severe hypothermia. She had been lying in the November cold for more than six hours before Chanler found her.

"She wouldn't be here right now," said Kat Parish, Megan's mother. 

American Red Cross Good Samaritan
Megan Parish is healing after the car accident that almost killed her.
American Red Cross

Megan's father John Parish added, "I'd like to thank Chanler from the bottom of my heart. I really appreciate it. He's definitely part of our family now, he's a really good guy."

Months after the accident, broken pieces of Megan's car are still scattered at the site. But Megan is put back together. She's healing, and here today because a hero just happened to drive by.

"If he hadn't been there, I wouldn't be here today," said Megan. "I wouldn't be alive if it wasn't for him and I really love him like a brother." 

Red Cross CPR and first aid training saves lives. Classes are available every day in Western Washington.

This story was done in partnership with the American Red Cross. KING 5's Evening celebrates the Northwest. Contact us: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Email.