Steven M. Gartner saved a boy from drowning, Miramar Beach, Florida, April 1, 2006. While wading in the Gulf of Mexico, a 12-year-old boy was carried seaward into deeper water by a strong current, as were three other children. They struggled and yelled for help. Steven, 17, was one of a group of out-of-state high school students who were playing on the beach nearby. Although flags posted on the beach indicated dangerous water conditions, Steven and two of his friends entered the water and waded and swam about 300 feet to the children. The 12-year-old boy lay partially atop Steven as Steven began to swim toward shore, but when the boy submerged him, Steven repositioned himself and began to push the boy in. Steven’s friends likewise began to take the other children to shore. The current impeded the rescuers’ progress, and for several minutes they struggled to overcome it and finally reach wadable water. Other members of Steven’s party took the 12-year-old boy to safety, and Steven waded ashore, where he lay, exhausted and aching, on the beach. The other rescuers also reached safety with the other children. The four children were examined by responding medical personnel, but they did not need treatment. Steven recovered after resting.
79393 – 911379393-9113