Elderly Good Samaritan dies attempting to rescue child being swept away by river

ABC News/KFSN-TVBy JON HAWORTH, ABC News

(FRESNO, Calif.) — A Good Samaritan who risked his life to save a child who was being swept away down by a river has died.

The incident occurred on Tuesday evening when the man, who was in his early 60s, saw a child being swept away down the Kings River at Winton Park in Fresno, California.

The man, along with the child’s family, immediately jumped into the water to attempt a rescue.

Firefighters described a frenzied scene when they arrived and saw at least five people in the water struggling to get back to shore.

“I know people were trying to save other bystanders and bystanders were trying to save those people,” Fresno County Battalion Chief Ryan Michaels told ABC News’ Fresno station KFSN-TV. “Ultimately, multiple people were in the water [and there were] several near-drownings. EMS was checking out three different victims because of the temperature of the water and them just taking on and inhaling some water.”

Firefighters say that everyone but the fisherman made it safely out of the water, including the child.

Authorities found the Good Samaritan’s body down river approximately 45 minutes later and attempted to perform CPR on the unidentified victim.

He was later pronounced dead at Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.