Brendan T. Wahl helped to save Daniel C. Lackey from drowning, Carmel, California, December 24, 1998. Daniel, 11, was climbing on the large rocks at the base of a cliff along the shore of the Pacific Ocean when he was swept into the cold, turbulent water by breaking waves. He was carried away from shore. Driving by the scene, Wahl, 40, general contractor, was alerted to the situation. An experienced surfer, Wahl climbed down to the water’s edge with his nine-foot surfboard, then, guided from shore by Daniel’s family members, paddled out to Daniel. Daniel was then about 150 feet from shore and was losing consciousness. Wahl positioned Daniel on the surfboard and, cold and tiring, started to paddle back to shore. A lifeguard who had been called to the scene arrived and swam out to them with a rescue tube. With Wahl using the tube, which was attached to the surfboard, the lifeguard mounted the surfboard, Daniel still atop it, and paddled to shore. There, he removed Daniel from the water, Wahl also requiring assistance from the surf. Daniel sustained hypothermia and was hospitalized overnight, and Wahl was hypothermic and nearly exhausted. Both recovered.
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