As a lifeguard, I learned in training how the guard can quickly become the victim if they are not careful. A drowning person doesn’t normally think rationally and will grab the first object they can find that floats, which is often the person trying to save them.
A brave grandmother learned this firsthand while trying to save a teenager that she noticed flailing around in a lake while enjoying a family day at the beach.
Joan Brosnan of Falmouth, Massachusetts, was enjoying family time at Jenkins Pond when she noticed something splashing about in the water and realized someone was drowning. Thinking quickly, she grabbed her boogie board and started swimming out to him.
“I jumped in the water and tried to hand him the boogie board, but he brought me under,” Joan recalled. “It was tough and I had to fight free and try to get the boogie board to him again.”
After breaking free she tried to pull him out by his hair, but he was too big for her to hold up and he started to sink to the bottom. That’s when Joan began screaming for assistance.
Brian Matthews, a bystander at the lake, heard Joan’s cry for help and ran into the water toward her and the victim. The boy had already sunk to the bottom of the pond, but Brian and some other helpful bystanders were able to pull the teen up to the surface and back to shore.
“We got him to the shore and got him on his side,” Joan said. “He started breathing on the way out and we got him on his side and he started to spit out water.”
Just a minute or two longer and this story would not have had a happy ending, but thanks to a quick-thinking grandma with a boogie board, it is with great joy that we can report this teen is fine and already back home!
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