Suffolk County Legislator Rudy Sunderman was proud to join with Suffolk County Legislature Presiding Officer Robert Calarco and Brookhaven Town Councilman Neil Foley in recognizing North Patchogue Fire Department members Justin Owens and Steven Welsh for saving a child’s life at Smith Point County Park.

The pair of North Patchogue firefighters were enjoying a day off on the Outer Beach at Smith Point when they were alerted that a 12-year old in distress was being dragged into the ocean by a strong rip current and was struggling to stay afloat. Without hesitation, both firefighters leaped into action and immediately swam out to the child. They were able to bring him back to the safety of his parents on the shore, where the child was then evaluated by EMS for injuries. There is no doubt that without the quick actions of Owens and Welsh, this incident could have ended tragically.

“In this day and age where we are constantly searching for heroes and role models, it is comforting to know that we have firefighters such as Justin Owens and Steven Welsh,” said Legislator Sunderman. “These true heroes risked their own health and safety to save the life of a stranger. They are a shining example of how all of our first responders selflessly serve to protect others.”          

– Fire News photo provided