Joseph Anthony Alaimo helped to save Abigail P. Slade from drowning, Palm Beach, Florida, March 21, 2004. Abigail, 10, and her cousin were swimming in the Atlantic Ocean when they were caught by a strong current that pulled them farther from shore. On the beach in that vicinity, Alaimo, 24, university student, saw them struggling and ran into the water for them, as did the girls’ uncle and several other men. After the uncle reached Abigail and towed her toward shore, he was relieved of her by Alaimo. Alaimo took Abigail a distance, then, overcome by exhaustion, was separated from her. He was rescued from the surf, and Abigail likewise reached shore safely. The uncle lost consciousness and was removed from the water by others. He died of drowning. Alaimo was taken to the hospital, where he was detained six days for treatment of nearly drowning, and he recovered. Abigail and her cousin, who was rescued by others, also were taken to the hospital for treatment, and they too recovered.
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