Henry C. Cameron, 15, schoolboy, rescued John W. McIntyre, 2, from exposure in a well, Lonoke, Arkansas, August 21, 1937. John dropped into a dry well, which was 20 feet deep, 16 inches in diameter for four feet from the top, and 14 inches in diameter thence to the bottom. The walls for 10 feet from the top were of clay and thence to the bottom were of firm sand. Four boys were offered money to enter the well, but each refused, and a cousin of John’s refused. Cameron, who was offered no reward and who was weak from an attack of malaria, then consented to enter the well. Two strong ropes were tied around his body and ankles, and four men held the ropes and lowered him head first. Sand that fell as he scraped against the walls entered his eyes, and he could not see. Cameron took hold of John’s ankles; and then he and John, who was unconscious, were pulled from the well. John recovered. Cameron suffered from a headache for the remainder of the day.
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Henry Chalmer Cameron, 94, of North Little Rock, Ark., died on Sept. 1, 2016. He was born to Clarence E. and Grace Cameron on Aug. 27, 1922, in Carlisle, Ark.
In 1937, when he was 15, Cameron rescued a 2-year-old boy who had fallen into a well in Lonoke, Ark. In recognition, the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission awarded him a bronze medal for heroism in April 1938.
At 17, Cameron joined the Navy. He served during World War II in the Asian Theater. Cameron also served in Korea, and his enlistment was extended because of the Cuban Missile Crisis. He reached the rank of chief petty officer before retiring from the Navy.
Cameron then settled in North Little Rock and became a respected and well-known residential homebuilder. He was a longtime member of Sylvan Hills First Baptist Church in Sherwood, Ark.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Billie Jo Cameron.
(Edited from an obituary published at arkansasonline.com.)