Teenage Boy With Down Syndrome Dives Into Ocean To Save A Drowning Child

Date August 14, 2018

A smart and strong young man is being hailed a hero as he rushed to the rescue of a little girl who was drowning in the ocean.

The lifesaving trick

We'll all like to think we can jump into the rescue when we someone is drowning. But only wanting to does not mean we can or know how to. 

A lot goes into rescuing someone. Doctor and lifeguard Dr. Susan Casette broke down this process in a FOX interview.

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Valerio's heroism

Valerio Catoia has had a love for swimming since he was a little boy. Along with his swimming skills, another thing that developed as he grew was his compassion. In fact, his swimming career grew so much that he even made it to the Special Olympics. He never let his Down Syndrome condition hold him down. 

The young Italian man was at the Sabaudia Beach in Lazio when a drowning girl caught his attention. The child was in the ocean and screaming out for help. It looked like the tide was dragging her further away from the shore.

Valerio wasted no time. He dove into the water and was able to help the 10-year-old child. To get her out of the water, he positioned the child's head in such a way that it remained above water, a first-aid trick that he had fortunately learned. 

The lifeguards did eventually get to them but, by that time, Valerio had been able to successfully save the girl. He basically became a hero overnight, making headlines in Italy. Many people praised his courage and calm in such a dicey situation. The Italian former prime minister, Matteo Renzi, even told him Italy should be proud to have men like him as a citizen.

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Two little girls; rescue

In a similar event that took place a couple of years ago, two girls were rescued when they fell into a pond and seemed to be unable to get out. 

The video below was courtesy of surveillance cameras at the Shandong Jiaotong University. The girls struggled in the water for a couple of minutes until a security guard arrived and dived to save them.

CGTN reported that the security guard had never actually learned how to swim, but he took the risk to save the girls.

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