Francis J. Higgins, Sr., 46, deckhand, saved Lorraine Greenstein, 20, from drowning, New York, New York, May 15, 1949. Miss Greenstein and approximately 3,000 other persons were passengers aboard a steamship which returned at night from an excursion and was moored in deep water three feet from the end of a pier in the Hudson River. Attached to the side of the ship two feet from the pier was a heavy wooden bumper. Disembarking with other passengers, Miss Greenstein crossed a gang-plank to the pier, which was 10 feet above the water. Without observing the opening, she stepped toward the ship to hail a companion and fell into the water. Unable to swim, she was submerged and drifted toward the stern in a strong current. Higgins was attracted and ran to the pier but in the darkness was unable to see Miss Greenstein. Holding himself rigid with his arms against his sides, Higgins stepped from the pier and dropped erect into the water. He narrowly missed the bumper, his back brushing against the pier in descent. For 45 seconds Higgins groped beneath the surface for Miss Greenstein but was unable to find her. He emerged 45 feet from the pier and sighting Miss Greenstein 10 feet away swam to her. He towed her 10 feet to the ship and raised her upward within reach of a man standing on the bumper. Miss Greenstein, who was semiconscious, was lifted to the ship. She was revived. Higgins was aided from the water in a chilled condition but recovered.41692-3705
Francis J. Higgins, Sr.