Katherine M. Mahlmeister attempted to save Mary Jane Kokal from drowning, Verona, Pennsylvania, July 1, 1957. While wading in a swimming pool, Mary Jane, 16, got into water beyond her depth and, unable to swim, flailed her arms wildly to stay afloat. Her companion, another 16-year-old girl, attempted to aid Mary Jane, who grasped her around the neck and submerged her several times. Mrs. Mahlmeister, 17, housewife, the only other person at the pool, entered the water and swam 24 feet to them. Releasing the girl, who then left the pool and called for help, Mary Jane grasped Mrs. Mahlmeister about the neck and submerged her briefly in water 6.5 feet deep. With her fist Mrs. Mahlmeister struck Mary Jane on the jaw but failed to subdue her. Mary Jane pushed Mrs. Mahlmeister beneath the surface and tried repeatedly to climb onto her shoulders as Mrs. Mahlmeister lost consciousness in water eight feet deep. Meanwhile, the screams of the other girl were heard by a man, who ran to the pool, dived into it, and swam to Mrs. Mahlmeister. He grasped her by the arm and swam to the surface near Mary Jane, who then was about to sink. Without releasing Mrs. Mahlmeister, the man also supported Mary Jane until another man who had been attracted reached her. As that man towed Mary Jane to the side of the pool and aided her from the water, the first man swam to a corner of the pool, towing Mrs. Mahlmeister. The men removed Mrs. Mahlmeister from the water, and the first man administered artificial respiration to her for nearly 40 minutes, after which she revived. Mary Jane, who had swallowed little water, suffered temporary nausea. Mrs. Mahlmeister was under the care of a physician for four days. She recovered.
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