TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Terre Haute firefighter and paramedic Justin Tallman said it’s hard to put into words what went through his mind during the Mardi Gras Parade in New Orleans.
Tallman was enjoying the Bacchus Parade with his friends and then he heard gunfire. People scattered, but Tallman called upon his training and stepped in to help.
Tallman said he didn’t really think about what he was doing, he just knew people needed help.
“I don’t think there was a time where I was like oh man, you know maybe I should run the other way it was just kind of, this is what I did,” Tallman said. “It’s almost like muscle memory I guess at that point so I said it was you know control the bleeding that you saw and once that was done search for something else that’s not visible.”
Tallman found a 22-year-old woman with a gunshot wound to her leg. He said he checked her for additional injuries and stayed with her until further care arrived.
Originally Tallman was not going to go to on the trip due to his wife being pregnant, but decided to go ahead.
Tallman said he and his wife reflected on the trip when he arrived back home.
“That’s what my wife kept telling me. Was well you know I think you know, that’s part of it like you were there for a reason and you know it’s kind of interesting how those things work out,” Tallman said.
Tallman has been with the department since May 2021 and he was at the top of his paramedic training class.