Friends Remembered: David J. Gretkowski

friends remembered
David J. Gretkowski

David J. Gretkowski, 54, of Burlington, Vt., died Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018, of glioblastoma. He was awarded the Carnegie Medal in 1989 after he saved a 15-yearold girl from drowning in Lake Champlain near Plattsburgh, N.Y. The girl was trapped in an air pocket beneath a sailboat that had capsized. Wearing a life jacket, he swam under the boat to the girl, and assisted her in reaching safety, but his life jacket snagged on a line as he was escaping, barely allowing his head to surface. A woman from another boat swam to him and freed him from the life jacket. Gretkowski was born in 1964, and after graduating from Rice High School and Saint Michael’s College with a degree in business management, he moved to Florida to work at the PGA National Golf Club. He then entered a career in the pharmaceutical industry. According to his obituary, Gretkowski was known for his humility, playfulness, and humor. He is survived by his wife, Stefanie Gretkowski; his parents, Henry and Elizabeth Gretkowski; and three brothers.