David J. Dougherty, Jr., saved Bridget M. and Joseph P. Harrison from drowning, Riverhead, New York, January 13, 1962. Bridget, 5, and Joseph, 7, walked on ice on a pond to an area of open water extending 30 feet from the bank. The ice gave way under Bridget, and she was submerged briefly in water 12 feet deep. David, 12, schoolboy, the only other person at the pond, was on the bank and called to Joseph to pull his sister onto the ice. Joseph tried to do so but slid into the water. He held to the ice with one hand and grasped Bridget with the other but was not able to keep her face from occasionally dipping beneath the surface. Although cerebral palsy had impaired the use of his right arm and leg, David removed his boots and jacket and entered the water. He swam 30 feet and took hold of Bridget, leaving his stronger arm free for swimming. As David started to swim toward the bank, Joseph grasped the back of his clothing. Towing both children, David tired rapidly. He told Joseph and Bridget to kick their feet, which they did. Thus aided, David towed them to within two feet of the bank, where he secured footing. Joseph waded from the water. David thrust Bridget onto the bank and then also climbed out.
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