Make your home page

4 skaters rescue driver who plunges into ice on Indianapolis canal

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Four ice skaters saved the woman who drove her car on the frozen canal Christmas day but they refuse to call themselves heroes.

Biankia Gleason crashed through the ice closer to the southern end of the canal after driving her car onto the ice. She was lucky the four bystanders quickly jumped into action and rescued her from the sinking car.

“We saw this lady just drive straight across the grass down a very steep hill and onto the ice,” said Rachel Bowling, one of the skaters.

Bowling posted the video to TikTok; she said the group skated around Gleason before realizing she was heading toward thin ice.

“When we got there her car had fallen through, her car had sunk through and she had probably been in the car about a minute when Jacob got to her,” Bowling said.

Bowling said her 31-year-old uncle who only wished to be identified as Jacob was the one to dive in to save Gleason.

Jacob did not want to speak on camera but told News 8, “I didn’t feel like it was much of a risk. I was going to be cold for a minute and then we were going to go inside somewhere.”

Bowling said this is just who Jacob is, “He was glad to do it and he would not have had it any other way.”

In order to rescue Gleason Jacob had to get off the ice and run across the concrete to jump back in the water.

“He skated up to where her car had fallen through hopped up on the concrete and just like plunged in by her driver’s side door,” Bowling said. “Skates and all. And he was still wearing the skates when he got out.”

There have been discrepancies on where Gleason entered the canal. She told authorities she came down near the colts canal play space but these eyewitnesses said she came down a steep hill after driving through the parking lot behind the Kurt Vonnegut museum.

“There were no medians blocking her way down. Personally, I don’t think she meant to drive on the canal. I genuinely think she did not know she was on a canal,” Bowling said.

The group described Gleason as disoriented when they found her.

“She wanted to know if her car was going to be ok and we were like it’s probably not going to be ok,” Bowling said. “But she did not really recognize that she was wet and for the first minute she just sat in her car while it was sinking.”

Overall the group was unfazed by the event and brushed away any praise. Jacob said it is just something he is going to reminisce about his family every Christmas.

“He’s very reserved which is why he does not like to be on the camera but he’s very passionate about the things he is and he won’t say a thing about it but he loved everyone,” Bowling said.

Gleason was arrested by police for a DUI on Dec. 25 after she was rescued. Charges have not yet been filed by the prosecutor’s office.