Sheila Marie Rose saved Anthony J. Matreselva from drowning, Ocean City, Maryland, June 26, 1999. Matreselva, 18, and five friends waded into the Atlantic Ocean and were quickly pulled into deeper water by a rip current. They struggled to return to shore. Ms. Rose, 39, pool attendant at a nearby condominium, had seen the boys approach the water and, knowing of the existence of rip currents in that area, started to the beach to warn them. When she arrived, the boys were yelling for help. She immediately ran into the water and directed them to swim parallel to shore to get out of the current. Seeing that Matreselva was the farthest out, she swam to him, finding him just below the surface of the water, his energy sapped. When Ms. Rose seized him and took his head above the water, a brief struggle ensued. Shouting encouragement and directive, Ms. Rose grasped Matreselva by the arm and, although he outweighed her, began to tow him parallel to shore, with Matreselva kicking. After they had swum beyond the range of the rip current, Ms. Rose towed Matreselva directly to shore, where he collapsed. He was treated both at the scene and at a hospital, and he recovered. Ms. Rose was nearly exhausted, and she too recovered. The other boys all left the water safely.
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