Robert E. Nesbitt helped to save Robert P. Proctor from drowning, Carolina Beach, North Carolina, August 2, 1964. While swimming in the Atlantic Ocean, Proctor, 25, bank cashier, was carried seaward by an undertow and submerged intermittently by the waves. Unable to make headway toward shore, he called for help. Robert, 18, student, and his two cousins, G. Thomas Burrell and George B. Nesbitt, ran 200 feet to the beach. With the others following, Robert waded and swam 150 feet to Proctor, who was in water eight feet deep between waves. Proctor then lost consciousness. Winded by his exertions, Robert supported Proctor with difficulty. Twice he submerged to the bottom but held Proctor’s head above water except when the waves washed over him. He felt the pull of the undertow but by kicking forcibly was able to maintain his position until Thomas and George arrived. They took hold of Proctor, and Robert then released him. A large wave struck them, causing Robert to swallow water and choke. The wave thrust Thomas and Proctor shoreward but submerged George and caused him to swallow water also. Too fatigued to give further aid, Robert swam toward the beach with effort. Thomas obtained a hold across Proctor’s chest and began towing him shoreward, making slow progress because of the undertow. George surfaced farther from the beach and was carried seaward. Thomas was nearly exhausted after towing Proctor to within 65 feet of shore, where others met him. They took Proctor and Thomas to the beach. Robert was greatly fatigued by the time he reached shore. Meanwhile a man with a life preserver swam to George, who had been carried to 300 feet from the beach. Another preserver, with a line attached, was thrown to them and by it they were pulled to shore. Proctor was revived and recovered.
47505 – 496147505-4961