Brian V. Frederick saved Josue Rodriguez and helped to save Martin N. Gonzalez from drowning, El Granada, California, September 20, 2003. Josue, 7, and Gonzalez, 44, were adrift in Half Moon Bay of the Pacific Ocean after their boat took on water and sank while they were on a fishing outing. After three hours, they were spotted by Frederick, 27, graphic artist, and others from a bluff overlooking the bay. Frederick descended a trail to the beach, removed his outer attire, and, despite the 58-degree water, entered the surf and swam to Josue, who was 90 feet from shore in large breakers. Grasping Josue by his life jacket, Frederick towed him to shore, then removed the life jacket and donned it himself. He re-entered the water and swam about 450 feet to Gonzalez, who, in high swells beyond the breakers, submerged shortly before Frederick reached him. Frederick submerged, grasped Gonzalez, and pulled him to the surface. A man in a kayak responded, but his attempt to tow Frederick and Gonzalez to shore was unsuccessful against a strong current. Frederick kept Gonzalez afloat until rescue personnel aboard a personal watercraft responded and removed him to a boat farther out. Aided by a line from the kayak, Frederick then swam to shore, where he collapsed on the beach. Both suffering hypothermia, Josue and Gonzalez required hospital treatment. Frederick was treated by paramedics for mild hypothermia, and his limbs were cut and bruised. He recovered.
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