William L. Walker, 23, restaurant maintenance man, died helping to save an unidentified boy, 9, from drowning, Halifax, Massachusetts, August 9, 1965. At Monponsett Lake the boy was clinging to a rope marking the edge of wadable water 35 feet from shore when he lost his hold, was submerged, and surfaced beyond the rope. He flailed wildly, his actions moving him farther from the rope, and then alternately rose and sank. Walker waded and swam to the boy, who was 45 feet from shore in water 10 feet deep. Walker submerged and surfaced with the boy astride his shoulders. While the boy held him under the chin, Walker swam five feet toward shore. He still was five feet from the rope when his head went below the surface. The boy released Walker and remained at the surface, flailing wildly and shouting. Walker did not reappear. One man waded and swam to the boy, who sank. The man submerged and saw the boy two feet beneath the surface. He also saw Walker below the boy. After thrusting the boy to the surface, the man took hold of Walker who was inert and surfaced with him. The boy then was two feet from the rope, struggling to stay afloat. The man released Walker and took the boy to the rope. The man and some teenage youths dived several times before locating Walker on the bottom. They brought him to the surface and towed him to the beach, but he could not be revived.
48403 – 511148403-5111