Salvatore J. Ciambrone helped to save Latonya Bodford from drowning, Pompano Beach, Florida, September 7, 1992. Latonya, 1, was in the back seat of a car which entered a canal and started to submerge. Ciambrone, 28, automobile mechanic, who lived nearby, saw the accident and ran to the scene. Learning that Latonya was in the car, he immediately dived into the canal and swam to the car, then opened its left rear door. Entering the car, Ciambrone located Latonya and pulled her above the surface of the water. The door had closed behind Ciambrone and he could not open it. As the car continued to sink, he attempted to roll down the door’s window but discovered that the windows were electric. With the air space in the car diminishing, Ciambrone moved to the opposite door and, with difficulty, opened it somewhat by pushing it with his back. A man who also had entered the canal swam to that door and helped to open it. Ciambrone handed Latonya to him, and he took her to the opposite bank, which was nearer. Ciambrone then left the car, which shortly submerged, swam to the bank of the canal, and exited it. He recovered from minor injury to his back.
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