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Zach Sawin ’16 helps save man trapped in car in Florida lake

By Tim O'Keeffe on January 15, 2013
Zach Sawin '16

Zach Sawin ’16 (left) and a friend, Hunter Haire, stand on a dock at Lake Mary, Fla. (Photo courtesy of Orlando Sentinel)

When his Colgate classmates ask Zach Sawin ’16 what he did during winter break, he can answer: I helped save a man’s life.

Sawin was back home with five friends from Lake Mary High School, just outside Orlando, Fla.,  on Dec. 15 when they noticed a car bobbing in a lake about 50 yards offshore, according to a story in the Orlando Sentinel newspaper.

The boys jumped into the lake and Sawin and Haire were able to free driver Miguel Hernandez, of Lake Mary, from inside the vehicle and pull him to safety.

“I just hope these guys know how grateful I am, and my whole family is, that they were willing to get out of their car and put their lives on the line to help my brother out,” Manny Hernandez told the Sentinel. “My brother feels like God personally reached out and saved his life. It’s given him a whole new perspective on things.”

Sawin is a first-year at Colgate who is an offensive lineman for the Raiders football team. You can read the complete Sentinel story here or watch him talk about the rescue in this video.

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