Two inmates have saved three boys from a raging creek in Washington on Friday, after the children's canoe capsized leaving them struggling to stay afloat in the fast-flowing waters.
Inmates from Larch Corrections Center are currently carrying out work near Salmon Creek, and on Friday were just about to finish their work for the day when they suddenly heard screaming coming from the waters.
- (Photo: YouTube/Fox Screen Shot)
They explained that they then saw some children's heads bobbing in and out of the water as they came down the fast-flowing creek towards them. The canoe the kids were traveling in apparently had capsized leaving the children fighting for their lives in the strong currents that were overwhelming them.
Nelson Pettis, a member of the crew, reported to Fox News: "We just thought it was some kids screaming until we seen their two heads bobbing in the water with the canoe upside down. They were coming down over flooded Salmon Creek. It was raging pretty fast."
The three boys were brothers who had been canoeing together when they had lost control. The canoe capsized spilling them out into the strong creek, putting them in immediate and serious trouble.
The boys were reportedly fighting as hard as they could just to keep their heads above water, and were screaming out for help, when the inmates heard them.
One inmate, Larry Bohn, upon hearing the children screaming, immediately jumped into the creek to go to the aid of the boys. Pettis quickly followed and jumped in to help with the rescue effort.
Pettis described, "I just let the current take me down until I could get to a spot where my feet hit ground and I tried to stay put. They actually came to me right there. Right then, the current swept me from underneath my feet and I grabbed onto the kids and got them to a little island in the middle of the river."
It is said that Bohn helped the eldest brother, who was 16 years of age, and dragged him to shore. After that, he jumped back in to help Pettis with the other two younger boys, who are just eight and 10 years old. The inmates helped the kids get hold of floating debris in the river, and a third inmate called John Fowler then helped rescue crews to get the boys over to shore.
Bohn has said, "They were really scared. They kept telling us 'thank you, thank you' all over again."
The three boys, as well as the two inmates who jumped in the river, were taken to a nearby hospital, all suffering from mild hypothermia, according to Fox News.
Fowler said, "I think we did something that any good person would do. You see three helpless kids in a river, you help. That's what you do. Just cause we're incarcerated, doesn't mean we're bad people. We made some bad choices in our lives, but we're still, we're just like everybody else. We're just paying our debt for what we did wrong."
The inmates have since been praised as heroes. All three are currently serving sentences for non-violent crimes, according to reports.
Here is a video report of the rescue by the inmates: