Anthony F. DellaMonica, Jr., helped to rescue Edward S. Popadic and another man from burning, Milford, Connecticut, June 7, 2014. Popadic, 61, and two deckhands were working on a 40-foot clam boat in Long Island Sound, about a mile off shore, when fire broke out in the boat’s cabin and grew quickly. All three men jumped into the water, with one of the deckhands securing flotation devices for Popadic and the other deckhand before swimming to the safety of a responding boat. Popadic and the other deckhand struggled to stay afloat alongside the burning vessel, the fuel tanks of which contained about 500 gallons of diesel fuel. DellaMonica, 57, veterinarian, and his cousin were in the cousin’s 20-foot fishing boat in the vicinity. They responded to the clam boat, which by then was heavily involved with flame and was issuing thick, dark smoke. As his cousin took his boat to within 10 feet of the burning one, DellaMonica threw one end of line to Popadic and the deckhand. They held to the line but were drawn toward the stern of the cousin’s boat. Not wanting them to be injured by his boat’s propeller, the cousin maneuvered his boat to reposition the men, taking it even closer to the burning one, as DellaMonica guided the rescue line. The cousin then backed slowly away, pulling the men to safety as small explosions on the burning boat threw debris into the water. Popadic was hospitalized two weeks for treatment of burns, and he recovered.
87093 – 982687093-9826