Douglas John Sauer helped to save Michael F. Goode from drowning, Harrison Township, Michigan, January 19, 2003. Goode, 49, was operating his snowmobile on ice-covered Lake St. Clair when the ice gave way beneath him about three-fourths of a mile from shore and he fell into water about six feet deep. The air temperature was about 15 degrees, and winds compounded its chill. Ice fishermen, including Sauer, 23, cement mason, responded to the scene, where their efforts to throw a line to Goode were unsuccessful. Sauer, who was wearing a life jacket, had one end of the line tied to him, then he lay prone and began to crawl toward Goode. The ice broke beneath him. After others pulled him back onto solid ice, Sauer stood and ran toward Goode, then plunged into the open water. Momentarily stunned by its coldness, Sauer swam about 80 feet to Goode, reaching and holding to him from behind. The other fishermen pulled on the line and returned them to the edge of solid ice, then hauled them out of the water. They were taken by all-terrain vehicles to shore, where rescue personnel were waiting. Goode was hospitalized for hypothermia, and he recovered. Sauer declined medical attention at the scene but required two days to recover from exposure to the cold water.
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