Russell S. Wilde helped to save Amy and Bonnie Meissner from drowning, Ship Bottom, New Jersey, June 25, 1987. While swimming in the Atlantic Ocean, Amy, 11, and her sister Bonnie, 18, were pulled into deep water about 300 feet from shore by a strong undertow and an ebbing tide. On the beach, Wilde, 21, off-duty police officer, heard their screams for help and, accompanied by two friends, swam to them. Wilde and his friends were unable to progress toward shore against the strong current. Tiring, they supported the girls for about 15 minutes, until their cries for help attracted a man who swam to them with a surfboard. Amy and Bonnie were placed on the surfboard and towed to shore by Wilde and the man, Wilde’s companions following. All collapsed on the beach, exhausted, but they recovered.
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