Robert Douglas Johnston saved Richard J. Kachmar from drowning, London, Ontario, February 21, 1998. Richard, 11, and two other boys were walking on ice-covered North Pond when the ice gave way, causing Richard and one of the other boys to fall into water more than six feet deep at a point about 50 feet from the nearest bank. Johnston, 47, chiropractor, was walking his dog on that bank when he saw the boys fall through. Taking a branch with him, Johnston walked onto the ice toward Richard and extended the branch to him. Weakened by the cold, Richard was unable to grasp it. Johnston then lay on his stomach and moved closer to Richard, but the ice beneath him broke and he too fell into the water. In an attempt to push Richard out of the water, Johnston was submerged briefly under solid ice, but he freed himself, moved to Richard, who was still in open water, and grasped him. Requiring repeated attempts, Johnston pulled himself onto the ice, then pulled Richard out of the water. He carried Richard off the pond, then to a nearby home. Both were cold and tired, but they recovered. The other boy who had fallen through the ice escaped to safety.
72544 – 824272544-8242