Mark Padgett helped to save Roy M. Smith from drowning, Darien, Georgia, April 17, 1988. From a boat moored near the bank, Smith, 37, entered the Darien River to swim but was carried downstream by a swift current that was effected by a falling tide. Patrolling the river, Padgett, 30, law enforcement ranger, dived into the river and swam to him. A struggle ensued. The current carried both men 300 feet through the narrow space between several commercial fishing boats moored along the bank. Free of the fishing boats, Smith was pulled from the river by persons in a motorboat. Unable to swim against the current to his patrol boat, Padgett was taken downstream to a point where other boaters removed him from the water. Nearly exhausted and having hit his head on one of the fishing boats, Padgett required hospital treatment. He fully recovered.
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