Meghan O’Reilly-Green helped to save Thomas J. Wadkins, Jr., from drowning, Hatteras, North Carolina, July 14, 2013. While swimming in the Atlantic Ocean, Wadkins, 26, and a friend attempted to return to shore but made no progress against a very strong current, which took them farther out. They shouted for help. In another party at the scene, O’Reilly-Green, 31, student, was walking on the beach and heard them. Although she was seven months pregnant, she took a boogie board from nearby, entered the water, and swam out to the men, who were about 300 feet from shore. After giving Wadkins the board, which was then lost to the surf, she attempted to position him for towing, but a struggle between them ensued, during which O’Reilly-Green was submerged. Freeing herself, O’Reilly-Green swam to another responding rescuer, took a boogie board from him, and returned to Wadkins. Securing Wadkins to the board, she pushed him out of the strong current and toward shore, reaching water atop a sandbar. Fatigued, O’Reilly-Green returned to the beach as arriving first responders entered the water to take Wadkins, and others who had been caught by the current, to safety. Wadkins and O’Reilly-Green swallowed water, and O’Reilly-Green was extremely fatigued. Both recovered.
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