A 7-year-old boy has been hailed as a hero after swimming for an hour to save the lives of two other family members.
Chase Poust, his 4-year-old sister and their father went fishing off the Florida coast Friday night.
Chase’s father Steven anchored the boat and the boy and his sister then got out to swim. However, as Chase recalled to local station News4Jax, the current was far too strong.
“The current was so strong that my sister–she usually hangs out at the back of the boat and–she let go so I let go of the boat and grabbed her and then I was stuck,” the boy told the station.
Seeing his two kids in trouble, Steven immediately jumped into the water to try to assist them.
However, the problem was that while Abigail did have a life jacket on, neither Chase nor his father did.
Steven recalled to News4Jax how the situation became emotional when he didn’t know whether they would all make it.
“I told them I loved him because I wasn’t sure what’s going to happen,” Steven told the outlet. “I tried to stick with her as long as I could–with both of them. I wore myself out, and she drifted away from me.”
Then the boy made a decision which would ultimately prove to be the salvation of his two other family members. While his father tried to save his sister, Chase started swimming to shore.
For an hour, he would swim for a while, then float on his back to rest. Eventually he made it to shore.
That’s when he ran to a neighbor’s door to get help. Together they called 911 and got rescue crews into the water.
Florida Fish and Wildlife crews quickly found and rescued Abigail and her father.
“We’re here. By the grace of God, we’re here,” Steven said.