A brave teen is being hailed as a hero after saving an elderly World War II vet from the jaws of death. It's safe to say that if 17-year-old Alex Travis hadn't just happened to have been driving by at the very moment 93-year-old war vet Stuart DeLand was sinking to his horrible demise, this elderly gent who once served our country wouldn't be here today. It all started when DeLand suddenly blacked out while driving his car along the Bradley Brook Reservoir in upstate New York. He drove right into the body of water and began to sink while still trapped in his car. That's when Alex just happened to be driving by.
Alex, who was in a car with his grandfather and 5-year-old sister, spotted the car sinking and saw the elderly man slumped over the wheel inside. Alex suddenly unbelted his seat belt, leapt from the car, and began sprinting to where DeLand was sinking to his doom.
"I didn't really think. It was just like an instinct," he told Syracuse.com.
Alex threw his phone on the ground, kicked off his shoes, scrambled down an embankment, and dove into the water. When he reached the car, he screamed at the man, asking if he could swim.
DeLand, who had come to, said he could not. The car was rapidly sinking.
Alex reached into the window and managed to unbuckle the man's seat belt, and then told him to hold his breath, because the car was about to go under. And then it did.
Alex took a gulp of air and dove under the water. Fifteen feet below, he managed to get his fingers into a crack in the window and wrenched and wrenched, his feet against the window, until it suddenly smashed in his hands.
He was now able to pull DeLand from the car. He brought him above water and was also able to swim with him, keeping his head above water, until they reached shore.
Incredible. Unbelievable. Like something out of a movie!!
In fact, Alex credits movie watching with his saving technique, saying: "I've never taken lifeguard lessons, but I've seen a lot of action movies. I felt I knew what I was doing."
But now here is where Alex just makes your heart melt. Asked if he was afraid during his rescue, he said yes he was, but: "I would rather die trying to save someone's life than live with the guilt of watching someone die when you could have done something about it."
Oh. My. God. Alex is a fabulous human being! And WHERE did Alex get this kind of enviable character? From his parents, of course! He told CNYCentral.com:
I feel like I did a good thing, but that's how I was taught, how I was raised.
Do not ever feel like your rearing methods are for naught. You can raise a kid like Alex! Wow.
Kudos to Alex -- and to his family for bringing up such a hero.
What do you think of this kid? Do you hope you're raising a hero?
Image via CNYCentralNews/YouTube