A Sherbrookois couple saves a child from drowning in Massachusetts
On vacation in Westport, Massachusetts, a Sherbrooke couple rescued an eight-year-old child in distress off Horseneck Beach. Gabriel Roy and his wife, Kassandra Rodger, rescued the boy in the early evening of July 25, after hearing calls for help.
“It’s a question of being in the right place at the right time,” says 23-year-old Gabriel Roy, humbly summarizing his gesture of bravery.
“We were coming from the grocery store and we decided to go to the beach to take pictures. It was our last night of vacation. ”
It was around 7.45 pm. About 15 people, including children, were on Horseneck Beach. By this time, the rescuers had finished their day’s work. “We heard screaming. We thought people were playing until we heard someone shout “Help!” ”
The boy’s mother did not know how to swim, according to Gabriel Roy. “She was in the water and she panicked. Kassandra told him to come back to the beach to be safe. The father was completely frozen. ”
The Sherbrookois did not ask any questions before going into the water. “I took off my shirt, threw my keys on the floor and went to the water. It seemed like it was idling, but everything was going very fast at the same time. I was just thinking of picking up the child. ”
The boy was far away. Very far. “Where the child was, I had water over a yard over the head. The current was strong. It was difficult to bring him back. If I had been alone, I would have put myself on the back to return to the beach. ”
But now, the kid, who remained conscious throughout the event, struggled to keep his head out of the water. “His head was coming in and out of the water. When I arrived, he got into a little ball in my arms. I held it at arm’s length to keep it out of the water. ”
“When I arrived on the beach, I put the boy on the sand so that he was dry. ”
– Gabriel Roy
The young man, who has no special training in swimming, never thought that he had put himself in danger. He reports that he and his wife remained very calm throughout the rescue, which would have lasted about fifteen minutes. “When I arrived on the beach, I was exhausted. I laid the boy on the sand so that he was dry. My wife called 9-1-1 and we used a towel to keep the child warm. He became all white. The feeling, when the mother hugs you, it’s special … ”
The boy was taken to hospital by ambulance.
“For our dinner in the evening, we did not eat much … We could have arrived 30 seconds later and it would have been too late … When we returned to the campsite afterwards, everyone was going about their business . This is where you realize that our everyday problems are minor when compared to the value of a human life. ”
Sherbrookers did not have any further contact with the child’s family after watching the ambulance leave.
Kassandra Rodger, meanwhile, does not hope for congratulations. She prefers to stress the importance of watching over children who bathe. “It’s easy to go far in the sea, but it’s harder to come back …”
The event also made headlines on the Fall River Reporter website , a Massachusetts media outlet.