Veteran Saves 12-Year-Old Boy With Autism After He Nearly Drowned

Swimming in the ocean is lots of fun but it also is an activity that can be quite dangerous. In Florida, a 12-year-old boy discovered this truth when he was caught in a rip current. That young child has autism, but a 44-year-old veteran was there to assist.

As a former US Marine, Steven Jetton is accustomed to handling difficult situations. On August 29, he was visiting Princess Beach with his family. He heard the young boy and the boy’s uncle calling for help, and he didn’t hesitate.

The boy and his uncle were about 300 feet from shore and struggling at the time when he heard them. Northwest Florida Daily News reported on what happened.

When Jetton looked around him, he knew that there was nobody else there that could assist. He grabbed his surfboard and fought his way through the waves to get to the 2 struggling individuals in the water.

Authorities had already issued a strong current warning but the young boy and his uncle decided to venture out in the water anyway. There were also other swimmers who were in the water at the time. Jetton said that it was rough, but the swells weren’t huge.

As Jetton fought his way through the rough waters, he prayed for assistance. He was able to reach the young boy first, who was barely above water when he arrived. The uncle was able to swim closer and hold onto the surfboard. Lifeguards were already on their way.

According to the report, rescue team members came on jet skis and they assisted in bringing all three back to shore safely. The boy and his uncle were then taken to a medical center, where they were checked out and discharged.

Jetton felt that he was moved along by the adrenaline coursing through his body at the time. He was ready to get out and surf, but someone from the rescue team talked him out of it. In fact, he said that his legs went out from under him while he was talking to a lifeguard on the beach.

Jetton gave a warning to anyone who listened that they should stay out of the water if a strong wave warning is in effect.

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