Kwong Sin Paik, 47, soil conservation technician, helped to save Neil M. Okuna, 9, schoolboy, from drowning, Hookena, Hawaii, April 14, 1968. Neil, his father, and an-other man were fishing from the rocky shore when a very high breaker swept them into the Pacific Ocean. His father aided Neil as they were carried seaward. The other man was swept back onto the rocks and, although injured, sought help. Paik and Joseph Charles Canada learned of the situation. They ran a half-mile to the scene and saw only Neil in the water, his father by then having disappeared. From the rocks 25 feet above the water, Paik and Canada dived into the ocean between breakers 12 feet high. Paik retrieved an inflated innertube which he had thrown into the water; and they then swam to Neil, who was 75 feet from shore in water 20 feet deep. He was inert. Paik placed the innertube around Neil and by forcing water from him succeeded in reviving him. To get out of the breaker area so they would not be swept onto the rocks, Paik and Canada towed the tube and Neil farther from shore. They then began swimming parallel to shore in order to reach an area where they could land. Swells 15 feet high made it difficult for them to retain their holds on the innertube, and Paik had additional trouble holding Neil. They had to tow the tube nearly a mile before they were opposite a beach. By that time Paik was very tired and Canada even more so. A man and a youth met them in an outrigger canoe and took them the final 200 feet to shore. The body of Neil’s father later was recovered.
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