Melvin F. Morrison saved Abigail Williams and Willie Evertts from drowning, Greenville, Alabama, July 19, 1963. An automobile containing only Abigail, 3, and Willie, 4, coasted down a bank, plunged into a lake, and sank where the muddy bottom sloped downward at a steep angle. The open trunk lid was just above the surface four feet from the bank, but the front end was in water 12 feet deep. Removing his shirt, shoes, and glasses, Morrison, 31, furniture salesman, ran 60 feet and entered the turbid water. He swam to the automobile, submerged six feet, and thrust his upper body through the unobstructed opening of the two side windows. He found Abigail and began to back out of the sedan with her but because of his size experienced difficulty in getting through the window opening, which was 18 inches high. He wriggled out, surfaced with Abigail, and towed her to the bank. Morrison swam back to the automobile, submerged, and re-entered it. Failing to locate Willie, he worked his way out and swam to the other side, where he entered through the window opening there. He located some object which was caught and succeeded in freeing it. Badly in need of air, he surfaced with the object, which was a boot. After taking in fresh air, Morrison again submerged. He re-entered the sedan and found Willie in the front seat section eight feet below the surface. Morrison obtained a hold on Willie and backed out of the automobile. He surfaced with Willie and towed him to the bank. Abigail and Willie were revived and recovered.
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