John Conley helped to save a woman from drowning, New Bedford, Massachusetts, August 7, 2010. An 86-year-old woman was the driver of an automobile that in an accident left the parking lot of a marina, entered New Bedford Harbor, and began to sink in water about 10 feet deep at a point about 50 feet from the bank. Witnessing the accident, Conley, 54, chiropractor, ran to his boat, which was docked at the marina, donned a diving mask and fins, and then jumped into the water and swam about 60 feet to the car. Using a tool, he broke out the car’s back window and with another man who responded cleared pieces of glass from the window, both men incurring cuts to their arms and hands. Water entering the car caused it to sink quickly. Moving to the driver’s side of the vehicle, Conley twice submerged in attempts to pull the woman through the partially open window of the driver’s door, but he was unsuccessful each time and surfaced for air. On a third attempt, Conley pulled the woman out of the car. They surfaced. Conley and the other man swam her to the dock and with the aid of others hoisted her from the water. The woman was hospitalized for treatment of an underlying health condition, and she recovered. Conley also required hospital treatment, for cuts, and he too recovered.
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