Daniel C. Aquilino, Jr., saved John I. Morales, Hilda Salvarrey, Celia Reyes, and Otilia Cintron from drowning, Miami, Florida, June 30, 1963. A four-door sedan containing eight persons moved backward down the bank of the Tamiami Canal and entered deep water, where it began to sink slowly as it drifted toward midstream. At the bank, Aquilino, 37, firefighter, kicked off his shoes then entered the canal and swam 20 feet to one side of the sedan while his wife swam to the other. The driver pushed John, 8, through the window to Aquilino, while a 9-year-old girl was thrust through another window to Aquilino’s wife. As another man entered the water and saved a woman who had emerged from the car, Aquilino and his wife towed the children to the bank, then returned to the sedan. The driver and a 13-year-old male passenger had aided three other women from the vehicle. Aquilino swam to one of them, Mrs. Salvarrey, 34, and towed her 30 feet to the bank as the driver followed, and Aquilino’s wife and the 13-year-old boy likewise swam to the bank. The other rescuer, meanwhile, had returned for the two other women, Mrs. Reyes, 62, and Mrs. Cintron, 33, and was supporting them with difficulty near the sedan, which was then completely submerged. Aquilino swam 35 feet to them. Mrs. Reyes grasped him, causing both to be submerged. He broke free, surfaced with her, and began towing her to the bank. Fearing that the other rescuer was too exhausted to aid her, Mrs. Cintron released him and held to Mrs. Reyes. Aquilino towed both women to the bank as the other rescuer followed.
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