Nowadays, we don’t think of rain as being frightening. After all, it waters our lawn and garden, refreshing the earth.
It has a dark side, though: flooding. In my hometown of Lexington, Kentucky, a graduate student and her friend died in 2006 during a rainstorm.
That’s almost the same thing that happened to 9-year-old Gavin Moederndorfer-Quella. The boy from Jackson, Wisconsin, was playing with some friends near a drainage culvert after a rainstorm on August 27.
His friends put him up to a dare: Was he brave enough to jump into swirling waters that rushed around the drainage pipe?
“I thought it would not suck me in,” he told WITI. But he was wrong.
Jackson police Officer Kyle Henning reunited with the 9-year-old boy who was swept up by floodwaters Monday and he helped save.
Video interview coming up later today and story coming in Friday’s Daily News. pic.twitter.com/JYa0f0EO0F
— Nick Dettmann (@dettmann_mcfi) August 30, 2018
According to NTD Television, the waters would’ve whisked Gavin away, but he grabbed a hold of something. His friends called for adults to help.
About that time, Officer Kyle Henning was driving through the area. He noticed a group of people who seemed to be wrestling with something by the side of the road.
He instantly knew that something wasn’t right. “Accelerated as fast as I could, got there, got out,” he said.
“Didn’t even call it out on the radio, didn’t even put the lights on. Just ran and tried to help.”
Henning knew in moments that he’d made the right choice. “You saw the water and those arms sticking up from it.”
The officer didn’t waste any time. With the aid of three additional adults, he lay on his belly and shimmied down into the culvert.
Then he grabbed young Gavin in a bear hug. He explained, “I was able to kind of twist myself and him enough to wrench him away from the water vortex.”
His struggle against the current that had taken all of the strength out of Gavin. Henning described the boy as “pale” and “in shock.”
The entire ordeal was captured on Henning’s dashcam. Fortunately, Gavin soon recovered.
His mother believes that her son would’ve perished if not for the officer’s quick action. “If it wasn’t for them he would not be here today,” she exclaimed.
Henning, though, simply stated that he was doing his job. “That’s the whole thing of a first responder,” he stated.
“You don’t question it. You just go in where people need help.”
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