Taxi cab heroes: 'It's what good people do and it had to be done'

Taxi cab heroes: 'It's what good people do and it had to be done' »Play Video

PORTLAND, Ore. -- A hotel employee described it simply as 90 seconds of panic.

Those were the thoughts of a Jupiter Hotel employee describes the frantic efforts to help a guest pinned underneath a taxi cab inside his Portland hotel room Thursday morning.

The family of Jonathan Toubin, 40, doesn't want his condition released to the public since it was last reported as critical. However, they are asking for prayers and they've still got hope, thanks to those five men who made sure Toubin got out from underneath that cab.

"This is the worst-case scenario you can imagine," said Jupiter Hotel manager Zach Miller. "You see this kind of stuff in movies."

Miller didn't have much time to think about the movies or anything else Thursday when the taxi crashed into the hotel.

"I don't feel it's something that I did," he said. "I think it's something we all did."

Miller and others had to act fast to save Toubin, a New York City disc jockey, who was in town for a show. Toubin is alive because at least five men helped to lift the cab off him. Chris Kelly, who works at the hotel's restaurant, was one of them.

"You get hyped up, just instinct just kicked in and it was, 'We got to do this. Something's got to happen," he said. "We tried putting it in reverse, but it wouldn't go and so we got a few more guys and fortunately enough we were able to pick up the back of the car."

Portland Police Bureau officer Stuart Palmiter said he didn't notice how heavy the cab was.

"I don't think anybody else noticed how heavy it was either," he said.

Palmiter was just 10 blocks away when the cab plowed into Toubin's room.

"In the motel room, he was laying crosswise and there was blood all over the wall, blood all over the sheets, blood all over him," Palmiter said.

Hotel staff took the lead in those first few minutes, giving CPR to cab driver Terry Uding and giving Toubin a chance to live.

"I did what I thought was right," Kelly said. "I don't think I did anything out of the ordinary. It's what good people do and it had to be done."

Jupiter Hotel officials brought in counselors for staff members who needed help dealing with what they saw. At this point, police have not cited Uding for any crimes.