Man saves sisters from drowning off Dania Beach Pier

A South Florida man saved two sisters from drowning Sunday near the Dania Beach Pier.

Ariel "Rum" Altagracia told Local 10 News that he and his wife often bait fish off the pier, but things took a turn Sunday night when his wife spotted two girls struggling in the water.

"My wife starts screaming, saying that there were two girls drowning," Altagracia said. "She tapped me on my shoulder and said, 'Babe, go get them.' I just jumped."

Cellphone video shows Altagracia trying to pull the girls from the water.

"It makes me feel like, you know, there's definitely some good people left in this world," Jeannie Alvarez, who witnessed the incident, said.

Alvarez was waitressing nearby at the Quarterdeck restaurant, when she heard the girls screaming in the water before seeing Altagracia jumping off the pier.

Altagracia said he heard a pop when he landed in the shallow water, but swam through the pain.

"It was not going to be good, because when I was reaching them, I saw the desperation in their eyes," he said.   

Witnesses saw Altagracia struggling with the girls in the water, so people who were on shore started running into the water to help them.

Altagracia ended up in the hospital with a bum foot, and one of the sisters, who is 16 years old, was also taken to a hospital.

Both girls and their family visited Altagracia at his home to thank him for saving their lives, bringing get-well balloons and cards.

Altagracia, who has two daughters himself, said he hopes, if came to it, someone would jump off a pier for his girls, too.

"Good karma," he told Local 10 News with a laugh.

Altagracia is back home, awaiting the results of his MRI.

He said he doesn't have health insurance but is just happy that everyone made it out OK.

This BBSNews article was syndicated from News | WPLG, and written by News | WPLG. Read the original article here.