Eugene Reed, Jr., 28, janitor, died in an attempt to save Andrew Aveleno and C. Edward Marske, 11 and 12 respectively, schoolboys, from drowning, West Alton, Missouri, July 8, 1959. While swimming in the Mississippi River, Andrew and Edward drifted with a floating log and were caught in an eddy 450 feet from the bank, where the water was 12 feet deep. In the strong current of the eddy Edward clung to the log, while Andrew attempted without success to swim toward a dike 75 feet away. Andrew’s mother was on the bank and screamed for someone to help the boys. Reed, who was fishing from the dike, immediately entered the water. As Reed swam toward the boys, the current carried the log with Edward still clinging to it out of the eddy. Reed swam 75 feet to Andrew. Grasping Andrew by the shoulder, Reed after several attempts succeeded in pushing him out of the eddy into an area of lesser current. Andrew then swam 60 feet to the log and clung to it. Reed attempted to swim out of the eddy but was submerged twice and did not return to the surface. A young man who was a good swimmer swam to the log, which had been carried nearer the bank. Edward then left the log and swam to wadable water; and the young man followed, towing the log with Andrew clinging to it. The body of Reed was recovered later.
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