Rory Ahearn helped to save Erik M. Lageroos from drowning, Danbury, Connecticut, January 11, 2009. Lageroos, 26, was cross-country skiing on snow- and ice-covered Candlewood Lake when he broke through thin ice at a point about 500 feet from the closest bank. He was able to hoist himself back onto the ice, where he called for help. Ahearn, 57, who lived on the bank in that vicinity, saw Lageroos on the ice and reported the accident. He then went to the edge of the lake and pushed an aluminum rowboat out to Lageroos. With Lageroos holding to a line at the bow of the boat, Ahearn started to return to the bank, pulling the boat. When they were about 100 feet from the bank, Ahearn broke through the ice, striking his head on the boat. He was able to get his legs back onto the ice, but with difficulty, as he maintained his hold of the boat. Firefighters arrived shortly. They secured a line to Ahearn and pulled him to the bank and then secured Lageroos and pulled him through open water to safety. Both men required hospital treatment for hypothermia, and Ahearn for a laceration to his forehead. They recovered.
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