Denver C. Abbott died attempting to save Donna M. Moore from drowning, Belleville, West Virginia, July 17, 1966. While swimming in the Ohio River, Miss Moore, 17, got into deep water and tried to swim toward the bank but was carried away from it by a backlash current resulting from the discharge of water at a nearby dam upstream. She was submerged briefly and called for help. A young man on leave from the Marines swam to Miss Moore, who threw her arms and legs around him and caused both to be submerged briefly several times. Abbott, 36, sheet metal worker, entered the water wearing swimming trunks. He waded and swam 25 feet to within 10 feet of where the young man had surfaced after breaking free of Miss Moore. Abbott said he would get Miss Moore. The young man, badly winded and greatly fatigued, swam to the bank. Abbott reached Miss Moore 35 feet from the bank. Miss Moore, with her face above water, held to Abbott with both hands. Only the top of Abbott’s head was above the surface. Abbott and Miss Moore then sank together and did not reappear. Their bodies were recovered later.
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