Richard Lowell Groves, 11, schoolboy, saved Lawrence A. Hobson from drowning, Sacramento, California, July 17, 1962. Lawrence, 8, a poor swimmer, waded into the American River, lost his footing, and was carried by the current to 30 feet from the bank. He sank briefly, swallowing water, and then called for help as he began to drift downstream in water seven feet deep. Richard, 11, schoolboy, entered the cold water and swam 45 feet to Lawrence, who was flailing his arms. When Richard attempted to take hold of him, Lawrence grasped him by the shoulder. Both boats were submerged. Richard swallowed some water but broke Lawrence’s hold and returned to the surface. He then obtained a hold on Lawrence, who was just beneath the surface, raised his head above water, and towed him 20 feet to within 10 feet of the bank. Winded and tired, he then grasped an overhanging branch of a tree while maintaining his hold on Lawrence. Unable to secure footing on the muddy river bottom, Richard continued supporting Lawrence until the latter’s mother waded to them. She took Lawrence to the bank as Richard, greatly fatigued, followed.
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