Good Samaritans take action after Tooele man badly burned at campsite

Jun 17, 2024, 7:00 AM

TOOELE — A Tooele County family is thanking the good Samaritans who saved their father’s life during a camping trip emergency.

Joey Espinoza’s daughter and stepdaughters said their dad was badly burned when he had a seizure that caused him to fall into a campfire. He and his wife, Leanna, were camping up Middle Canyon around 11 p.m. on June 8.

“The last thing he remembers is throwing a couple sticks into the fire,” his daughter Michaela said. “Then he woke up in the truck that nearby campers were taking him in. He does not remember anything that happened.”

Michaela said her stepmom, Leanna, was sitting next to her husband when he fell face-first into the campfire.

“I’m very, very grateful she was right there,” she said. “She pulled him out so fast and pulled him straight back. Luckily, she didn’t get burned.”

She said Leanna yelled for help and turned on her car alarm to alert nearby campers.

“When the alarm is going off and she was just screaming at the top of her lungs, then she just seen cars just coming, just coming in the campground,” said Brandee Harris, Leanna’s daughter.

Read the full story and more from Shelby Lofton on

Related stories

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Tooele County

A fire truck parks at the scene of the HAZ-MAT situation....

Heather Peterson

North Tooele Fire District gifted water tanker

Thanks to the Bureau of Land Management, the North Tooele Fire District now has a new water tanker at its disposal.

19 days ago

One man is dead and the other is in critical condition after a motorcycle accident....

Kennedy Camarena

One man dead, another in critical condition after motorcycle accident

One man is dead, and another is in critical condition after the two were involved in a motorcycle accident on Saturday night.

1 month ago

The Tooele Valley Academy of Dance is debuting a new ballet inspired by a Portuguese fairytale "The...

Cassidy Wixom,

Tooele ballet academy students to perform new ballet with music written for them

The Tooele Valley Academy of Dance is debuting a new ballet inspired by a Portuguese fairytale "The Enchanted Maiden."

3 months ago

Students gather to speak to International Space Station astronaut, Mike Dominick at Blue Peaks High...

Aimee Cobabe

Tooele County students speak with International Space Station astronaut

The students gathered in the high school gym and communicated with the astronaut and the International Space Station via ham radio.

3 months ago

A bomb is dropped from a U.S. Air Force F-35A at the Utah Test and Training Range on Thursday, Feb....

Derrick Jones

Air Force to detonate 10,000 pounds of explosives from now until September

The Air Force is detonating old and obsolete Department of Defense rocket motors. However they're not just tossing them in the garbage can.

3 months ago

Tooele City Police vehicle...

Pat Reavy,

Report describes disturbing, ‘destructive’ behavior by 9-year-old accused of killing his father

A new report says a 9-year-old boy accused of killing his father in Tooele had displayed "destructive" and disturbing actions and tantrums.

4 months ago

Sponsored Articles

A young woman smiles while reading the menu at a lakeside restaurant, enjoying the panoramic view o...

Bear Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau

The best restaurants to try in Bear Lake

Save this guide to the best restaurants in Bear Lake when you need to find a place to dine during your next visit.

Female leg stepping on weigh scales. Healthy lifestyle, food and sport concept....

Health Utah

Sustainable weight loss: the science-backed way to achieve it

Learn more about Debbie's weight loss journey with Health Utah, who have a unique weight loss philosophy for success.

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...


Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

Good Samaritans take action after Tooele man badly burned at campsite