PORTLAND, Ore. -- A deputy sheriff on Southern Oregon's coast who spent 45 minutes battling the surf and keeping a teenager's head above water was described as delirious and losing consciousness when rescuers were finally able to pull the two from 50-degree water.
Deputy Terry Brown was hypothermic and hospitalized in critical condition Monday, but he and the 14-year-old were expected to recover.
(Deputy Brown) had a lot of mental fortitude to stay out there and keep treading water and keep that little boy up and out of drowning, said David Rankin, training officer with Seaside Fire & Rescue.
A lot of times, even on our own beach, we go out for one rescue and a good Samaritan tries to help them (and gets trapped), he said. So we typically plan to rescue two people almost every time we go on a rescue.
Boats couldn't get to the two. A rescue swimmer was able to get ropes to them so they could eventually be pulled to safety.
As summer approaches, Rankin said he wants people to understand the dangers of rip currents and how to escape them, especially after Monday s rescue.
(Rip currents) are like walking against a treadmill. You have to get off of it to come back to the beach, said Rankin. Swim parallel to the beach or along the beach until you finally break free of the rip tide then you can swim back to the beach.