WATCH– Teen Helps Rescue Elderly Man, Dog When Jeep Falls Through Ice: ‘Right Place at the Right Time’

When a car fell through the ice on Iowa’s East Okoboji Lake, a teenager immediately jumped into action.

Seventeen-year-old Joe Salmon helped rescue 83-year-old Thomas Lee and his dog, Cooper, who were caught inside the Jeep, the Des Moines Register reported on February 6.

The Dickinson County Sheriff’s Office said it happened underneath the Highway 71 bridge and shared photos of the scene, showing the car nearly submerged in the frigid water.

The agency said five men helped in the rescue, naming Salmon, Corey McConnell, Kody Harrelson, Cody Chester, and Chris Parks.

Lee was on his way to a relative’s fishing shack when the incident occurred. Salmon, who is a wrestler, football player, and track runner, was ice fishing with his mother when he saw the vehicle and called 911 for help.

The group told Lee to try and get out, but that was the moment they realized something was moving around in the back of the car, so Salmon decided to go into the water that was up to his chest.

He recalled, “I got on the bumper of the rear and tried opening the back door, but all the windows were locked, but one guy gave me a knife and I hit the back glass a couple of times.”

Aerial video footage shows the moment he pounds on the window, pulls out the dog, and tosses him to nearby rescuers.

Meanwhile, Lee’s foot was stuck and he could not escape, according to Salmon. Salmon pulled the console up, which helped free him.

Later, according to the video, Lee emerges from the back window and rescuers help him to safety. He was eventually taken to a local medical facility, but he and his dog did not suffer any injuries.

Following the incident, Salmon was examined for minor cuts and was given dry clothes before he resumed fishing.

“I’m happy that he was OK and the dog was OK. It was just crazy at the time. I’ve never done anything like that,” he recalled.

Social media users praised the young man and others for their quick thinking, one person writing, “Get those kids a medal! Good job guys.”

“Amen for those 5 guys saving the man and his dog! They must’ve been at the right place at the right time. God was watching over them,” another commented.


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