A man who jumped off a bridge to rescue a toddler recently got to ride thousands of feet in the sky inside an F-16 Fighting Falcon.
The Air Force Thunderbirds honored Jonathan Bauer as a “hometown hero” before an Air Show that took place in Ocean City, Maryland, WJLA reported Friday.
According to Bauer, he and his daughter were running errands on May 2 when he heard tires screeching and watched a truck lose control on a bridge over Assawoman Bay, slam into a cement barrier, and flip over onto a guardrail.
Other cars were involved in the wreck and one hit his vehicle. Once he made sure his daughter was safe, he rushed to the truck that was teetering on the edge of the overpass.
A man who escaped from the vehicle pointed at the water, Bauer recalled.
He immediately leaped 25 feet into the water, swam to the child and “aggressively patted her on the back,” he noted. She spit up water, coughed, and eventually took in a deep breath.
A boat picked them up and Bauer handed the child to emergency responders when they reached the shore. He was later recognized by officials for his courage.
“His selfless act shows the best America has to offer, and we’re proud to have honored him with a flight today,” the Air Force Thunderbirds said in a Facebook post on Friday:
Jonathan Bauer is our hometown hero for the OC Air Show 🇺🇸In May, Jonathan saved an 18-month-old girl who was thrown…
Thunderbirds Maj. Jason Markzon told reporters Bauer aced the flight.
“There was no fear in his heart going flying and I put him through the ringer. We went rolling. We pulled some Gs. We did some loops and he crushed all of it,” he stated.