MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa — Nine-year-old Addison Gannaway described the unforgettable sound, saying, “Kaboom.”
That noise then led her to an unimaginable sight. “All I saw was the shed just crashing down and my dad being trapped,” she said.
Matt Gannaway was taking down his mother’s 40-year-old shed on Tuesday morning. It was a late spring project before she planned to move from his childhood home in Marshalltown.
“It came down like it was supposed to, but then it flipped over sideways and knocked me out and pinned me underneath it,” said Matt.
Matt’s four children and two others from the neighborhood could see he was in trouble.
“He’s gasping for air. I must save him,” said Addison.
A blow to the head left him unconscious.
“Above my forehead, I believe, by the looks of it,” recounted Matt.
His 5-year-old son Kaidan Gannaway remembers it vividly. “He was bleeding on his head and neck and all over the place,” he added.
The kids had to act fast.
“Nothing is impossible if we set our minds to it and work together,” said 13-year-old Ethan Gannaway. The teamwork paid off.
Addison said, “My sister was right here, lifting up right here, and I was here pulling on this trying to get him out.”
Their success was an amazing feat that still hasn’t quite sunk in after the paramedics took Matt to the hospital. “I don’t think on a normal basis kids can lift a roof off their dad who’s pinned against the wall,” said Ethan.
Adrenaline caused Addison to forget about a recent softball injury to her arm. “A softball hit me right here and cracked my bone,” she said, after she pushed through pain to save her dad. “Family comes before my body.”
Matt suffered a broken scapula, but his pain will be temporary while his new outlook on life is stronger than ever.
“Especially after a situation like this, you have to live your life to the fullest, and my family and kids are number one to me,” he said.
The Gannaways say they already have friends who have offered to haul away what is left of the shed. Matt’s mother plans to move in June.