When his wheelchair rolled down a grassy slope and into a lake, an 81-year-old man almost drowned but was saved by his dog. Harry Smith, a resident of Port St. Lucie, Florida, was strolling Sarah, his 9-year-old beagle mix, in his neighborhood when his electric wheelchair lost traction and fell down a slope, throwing him out, as reported by a Facebook post from the neighborhood officers.
He described the moments his wheelchair got trapped to WPTV: “I tried to turn to get out of it but it went backward instead and right down the slope and threw me right in the lake.” Smith shouted for aid as he tried to keep afloat due to his inability to swim. Sarah, seeing trouble, began barking furiously, bringing the two men, Edward Suhling and Aby ‘Jacob’ Chacko, to her aid.
Suhling, 58, said to the TCPalm, that “the dog was jumping in the water.” So we both went over and immediately jumped in the water, where my friend got his arms and I grabbed his legs. As they were both sprinting to the incident, Chacko said he was able to call over Officer Adam Doty and ask for assistance. Suhling remarked, “You could see it on his face.” He believed he was going to die. Sarah, he said, was “the true hero that day,” because he hadn’t heard Smith shouting, only the dog barking.
Smith was given on-site medical care and was later deemed healthy enough to go home, but the water had ruined his electric wheelchair. After seven years with Sarah, Smith couldn’t help but brag about his furry rescuer. She is such a wonderful dog. Sarah is adored by everyone in the neighborhood, who all watch out for her, he said WPTV, adding that Sarah was given a treat for her good behavior.