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With hundreds of cars stranded, strangers are helping strangers dig their cars out

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Posted at 7:06 PM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-15 21:06:16-04

DENVER — Now that the storm is over, the real fun begins for drivers who left their car behind during the blizzard.

"It’s piled up pretty bad," Chevy Nielsen said.

Nielsen left work Sunday night, but he never made it home. Fortunately, a passerby took him to a nearby hotel to stay the night.

Monday morning, Nielsen's car could be found on a side road off I-70 surrounded by others stranded in the snow.

"At least I’m not the only one, but I shouldn’t have been out here," Nielsen said.

In Brighton, enough cars needed a tow that they decided to take them all to Dicks Sporting Goods inside Prairie Center.

Cars left overnight lined busy roads like Peña Boulevard Monday morning. Not far from Peña, on 56th Street near DIA, even more drivers were stranded. Luckily, ErRon Williams was driving by and found families in need of help.

"I pretty much stopped what I was doing to help them get out," Williams said.

Williams, a United Airlines employee, was on his way home from work when he saw the families in need. Williams said he used an ice scraper and his bare hands to dig two families out of the snow.

"I just kept digging and digging until they finally got out and got on their way," Williams said.

Williams ended up being punished for his good deed because his car also got stuck. Monday morning, Williams went back to get his car, and in the process, helped two more families dig out.

"If someone needs help, I’m going to do the best I can to help them out," Williams said.

Nielsen certainly could have used Williams help that night. The next morning, Williams may not have been there, but luckily he still found help.

Bill Cornwell is a cardiologist at the University of Colorado Hospital. He too was stranded Sunday night — choosing to sleep in the hospital instead of testing the roads.

"I’m just trying to do my best to find my way home — following roads that are open and stay safe," Cornwell said.

Thanks to Cornwell and another passerby, Nielsen was able to break free.

"We all need to help each other out wherever we can and hope tomorrow’s a better day," said Cornwell.