Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Woman dies saving granddaughter from kidnapping
San Diego Union-Tribune ^ | 8/12/2010 | Kristina Davis

Posted on 08/12/2010 9:07:23 PM PDT by South40

RAMONA — Eighth-grader Cassidy Blankenbaker always knew her grandmother was selfless.

Now she can add brave and heroic to the list of loving attributes to remember her by.

Sharrel Blankenbaker, 63, sacrificed her life last week when she stood up to an armed kidnapper who was pulling Cassidy into his truck at an Amarillo, Texas, gas station.

The gunman fired a shot, striking the grandmother in the lung.

The distraction was enough for 12-year-old Cassidy to escape his strong grip, but her grandma died shortly after from the gunshot wound.

“I think she’d have done that for anyone,” Cassidy recalled Thursday from her Ramona home. “She was just that kind of person.”

Cassidy, a student at Olive Peirce Middle School, had just flown into Amarillo on Aug. 3 along with her 16-year-old brother, Dylan. They were there for their annual summer visit with grandma, who ran a paint contractor business with her husband of 25 years, Dale.

They were looking forward to gardening and getting another taste of grandma’s fried chicken, “the best chicken in the world,” Cassidy said.

Their grandmother picked them up from the airport, with their 5-year-old cousin in tow, and the foursome eventually headed to their grandparents’ home in Felt, Okla., two hours away.

First, they stopped at a Love’s truckstop and store for drinks and a bathroom break. It was when they were walking back to their car that an overweight man in a cowboy hat and boots jumped out of his pickup and latched onto Cassidy’s wrist.

“He pointed a gun at me and told me, ‘Get in my truck.’ My grandma wouldn’t let him,” Cassidy said.

Her grandmother got in between them, yelling at the man to get away.

“He shot her, and I had gotten my arm loose from him. And I started running away, but he chased me,” Cassidy said.

Her brother, who had already carried his younger cousin to safety, came back for Cassidy. They ducked behind the counter of the gas station.

Then another man came in, frantically looking for his daughter.

The kidnapper had her. He had forced her into his pickup as she was walking along the road with a friend.

After relaying a description of the truck to 911, Potter County sheriff’s deputies pulled over Gary Don Carner, 58, who died in an exchange of gunfire. His 11-year-old captive was able to flee from the pickup and jump into a ditch.

Earlier that night, Carner had failed in attempts to kidnap two women.

On Saturday, Cassidy spoke at her grandmother’s funeral in Oklahoma. She ended the eulogy with a memory of a storm that hit right after the shooting, and a brilliant double rainbow that appeared in the sky.

“I said, ‘Whenever you see a rainbow, think of my grandma,’ ” she said.

Blankenbaker also leaves behind three sons and eight grandchildren.

“I think my grandma is the greatest person in the world. It didn’t surprise me that she did that, but I’m really grateful she did.”


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: grandmother

1 posted on 08/12/2010 9:07:24 PM PDT by South40
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: South40

What a tragedy. Have the suspects been found?


2 posted on 08/12/2010 9:10:27 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (Obama's more worried about Israelis building houses than he is about Islamists building atomic bombs)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

He was killed, THANK GOD


3 posted on 08/12/2010 9:11:32 PM PDT by pissant (THE Conservative party: www.falconparty.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: South40

Our role as grandparents is to protect our children and esp. our grandchildren. No sacrifice is too great to carry this out.

Glad that one sick bastard is dead. Hope he died in pain, face down in the dirt.


4 posted on 08/12/2010 9:13:18 PM PDT by MadMax, the Grinning Reaper
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

God bless Sharrel Blankenbaker and prayers for her family.


5 posted on 08/12/2010 9:14:07 PM PDT by jazusamo (But there really is no free lunch, except in the world of political rhetoric,.: Thomas Sowell)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
Potter County sheriff’s deputies pulled over Gary Don Carner, 58, who died in an exchange of gunfire. His 11-year-old captive was able to flee from the pickup and jump into a ditch.
6 posted on 08/12/2010 9:15:24 PM PDT by Tammy8 (~Secure the border and deport all illegals- do it now! ~ Support our Troops!~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: South40

Wow! Grandma deserves a special place in Heaven IMHO. TWO girls were saved by her actions, and I imagine many, many more.


7 posted on 08/12/2010 9:15:37 PM PDT by 21twelve ( UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES MY ARSE: "..now begin the work of remaking America."-Obama, 1/20/09)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

Very few of us are lucky enough to die that way. I bet that Grandma would do it again, if God gave her a choice.


8 posted on 08/12/2010 9:15:51 PM PDT by ansel12
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tammy8

It’ll save the cost of a trial. Good riddance to him.


9 posted on 08/12/2010 9:16:27 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (Obama's more worried about Israelis building houses than he is about Islamists building atomic bombs)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: South40

May God bless and keep Sharrel Blankenbaker and comfort her family. Despite their present suffering, her family is very fortunate to have had such a wonderful grandmother and mother.


10 posted on 08/12/2010 9:23:12 PM PDT by Ronaldus Magnus
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

“I think my grandma is the greatest person in the world.”

Me too.


11 posted on 08/12/2010 9:24:30 PM PDT by Huskrrrr
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

That’s a hero. You don’t let the baystard take your granddaughter, even if it means that you have die.

When your time comes people, STAND UP.


12 posted on 08/12/2010 9:29:05 PM PDT by Southack (Media Bias means that Castro won't be punished for Cuban war crimes against Black Angolans in Africa)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

What bravery! What a grandmother! I did not know her, yet I feel sad she’s gone.

This might have ended differently had she been armed, but in any event she stood up to evil and saved the child.


13 posted on 08/12/2010 9:32:33 PM PDT by DBrow
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pissant

Can the captured kid vouch that there was nobody else?

Anyhow this seems to press “senseless” to a fresh extreme. The man must have been stark bats to try to carry out a kidnap assembled of an unrelated group of people. Even John Wayne Gacy was satisfied to nab but only one victim at a time.


14 posted on 08/12/2010 9:39:58 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: South40
I'm glad that monster is dead and sorry another hero had to die....

...but aside from that, this has to be one of the worst written articles I have seen in a long while. That is one of the reasons I stopped reading the Austin American Statesmen.

15 posted on 08/12/2010 9:41:45 PM PDT by Tolkien (Grace is the Essence of the Gospel; Gratitude is the Essence of Ethics.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Tammy8

At least we didn’t get a gaggle of Keystone Kops this time chasing after and shooting the kid!


16 posted on 08/12/2010 9:42:39 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: South40

No greater love...

God rest her soul.


17 posted on 08/12/2010 9:42:45 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (Hail To The Fail-In-Chief)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

May God rest her soul and comfort her family.


18 posted on 08/12/2010 9:44:14 PM PDT by tiki
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

That grandma could have used a gun right about then. Maybe the family will learn from this and purchase some firearms and learn how to use them.


19 posted on 08/12/2010 9:48:11 PM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: jazusamo; onyx; penelopesire

God bless Sharrel Blankenbaker and prayers for her family.

~~~~

Oh yes ... my Lord, what a heartbreaking, tragic crime.
What a hero. No greater love ...


20 posted on 08/12/2010 9:48:53 PM PDT by STARWISE (The overlords are in place .. we are a nation under siege .. pray, go Galt & hunker down)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: South40
What a wonderful grandmother!

She is old school. She truly loved and protected her granddaughter. I wonder ... how many parents today would be that selfless and loving to give their lives for their child? Never mind. really don't want to know. Too many parents outsource their kids and think that's fine too. Too many have others raising their kids.

21 posted on 08/12/2010 9:49:15 PM PDT by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Psycho_Bunny
Isn't that the truth?

No greater love ... .

It is the ultimate sacrifice of love.

22 posted on 08/12/2010 9:51:20 PM PDT by nmh (Intelligent people recognize Intelligent Design (God).)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: South40

This is wha tAmerica and responsible parenting/grandparenting used to be like. I’m so glad some remember.


23 posted on 08/12/2010 10:11:48 PM PDT by originalbuckeye
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: STARWISE

God bless Sharrel Blankenbaker and prayers for her family.

~~~~

Oh yes ... my Lord, what a heartbreaking, tragic crime.
What a hero. No greater love ...


Dear Lord. May God hold the heroic grandmother dear. Prayers for the grieving family.

My step-grandson attends the same Ramona school with the Cassidy Blankenbaker. Don’t know if they’re axquainted.


24 posted on 08/12/2010 10:36:22 PM PDT by onyx (Sarah/Michele 2012)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: South40

I noticed the cross in the picture’s background. Hopefully that implies she had given her life to The Lord.


25 posted on 08/12/2010 10:45:08 PM PDT by tang-soo (Prophecy of the Seventy Weeks - Read Daniel Chapter 9)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: tang-soo

Yes she gave her life to the Lord! Greater love hath no man than to give his life for another. This woman is surely in Heaven!


26 posted on 08/12/2010 10:56:18 PM PDT by Lil Flower (The destruction of America: It's a "big f*ckin deal"~to me!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: South40

What a brave, selfless woman. She saved her granddaughter (and indirectly, another child) from what would have been unspeakable horror. I’m crying right now, in awe of her. Blessings on her and her family.


27 posted on 08/12/2010 11:03:42 PM PDT by Hetty_Fauxvert (March 2010: Congress shoved Obamacare down our throats. November 2010: We will shove it back!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

What a brave, selfless woman. She saved her granddaughter (and indirectly, another child) from what would have been unspeakable horror. I’m crying right now, in awe of her. Blessings on her and her family.


28 posted on 08/12/2010 11:03:57 PM PDT by Hetty_Fauxvert (March 2010: Congress shoved Obamacare down our throats. November 2010: We will shove it back!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

That’s a real woman who has hopefully gone to glory. May her granddaughter live to make her proud.


29 posted on 08/12/2010 11:10:33 PM PDT by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

Concealed carry.... don’t leave home without it.

Let’s retire as many of these FRs as possible.

How about a $5 reward for pelts...


30 posted on 08/12/2010 11:17:41 PM PDT by DoughtyOne (It's not Rs vs Ds you dimwits. It's Cs vs Ls. Cut the crap & lets build for success, not failure.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: onyx

Oh no ... oh my gosh ..! Such a horrendous
monster to do this evil. Thank God his days
of terrifying are done.


31 posted on 08/12/2010 11:20:12 PM PDT by STARWISE (The overlords are in place .. we are a nation under siege .. pray, go Galt & hunker down)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I think the same way, it doesn’t bother me at all when these type of people are taken out.

My prayers go out to the family and friends of this brave woman. I am heartbroken that the family lost such a wonderful person in such a horrible way.


32 posted on 08/13/2010 12:00:06 AM PDT by Tammy8 (~Secure the border and deport all illegals- do it now! ~ Support our Troops!~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: South40

How horrifying! But there’s little doubt what fate would have awaited the grandchild.


33 posted on 08/13/2010 12:18:44 AM PDT by GnuHere
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

I read this story to my eight year old daughter, to reinforce our discussions about being aware. Things can happen quickly. You have to act in the moment. RIP brave Grandmom!


34 posted on 08/13/2010 2:21:46 AM PDT by catbertz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: South40

Sharrel Blankenbaker is a great American and person worthy of national media attention and tribute as a Hero.

Yet instead, they’ll focus on the self-centered jackass flight attendant who thinks he’s “all fabulousssss” for that unprofessional stunt he pulled on Jet Blue; a “hero” to the “Flingers Restaurant” class of citizens and journalists in our country - whose main contributions in life are reflected in simply wearing more than the minimum amount of ‘flair’.


35 posted on 08/13/2010 2:40:21 AM PDT by LittleBillyInfidel (This tagline has been formatted to fit the screen. some content has been edited.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

If she’d had a concealed weapon, perhaps only the kidnapper would be dead.


36 posted on 08/13/2010 3:21:31 AM PDT by Paleo Conservative
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: STARWISE

God bless her....*sniff*


37 posted on 08/13/2010 5:47:42 AM PDT by penelopesire (FOX NEWS TRIBAL PRINCESS)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: South40

RIP.


38 posted on 08/13/2010 9:20:35 AM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (~"This is what happens when you find a stranger in the Amber Lamps !"~~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40
No greater love hath a person than to lay down their life for their fellows.
39 posted on 08/13/2010 9:23:47 AM PDT by allmendream (Income is EARNED not distributed. So how could it be re-distributed?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: South40

What a precious, precious woman... May she be rewarded in heaven for her selfless love. A true hero.


40 posted on 08/13/2010 9:49:18 PM PDT by Humidston (For the first time in my adult life I FEAR my government.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Humidston
What a precious, precious woman...

Indeed she was. It's a shame such a wonderful woman had to leave this earth so young and in such a violent manner.

41 posted on 08/13/2010 11:21:54 PM PDT by South40 ("Islam has a long tradition of tolerance." ~Hussein Obama, June 4, 2009, Cairo, Egypt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson