Milford man recounts saving boy who fell through the ice

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MILFORD -- A Milford man was walking his dog before the Super Bowl, on Sunday, In hopes of tiring out his pooch. Instead, the man was the one who got the workout by rescuing a 10-year-old boy.

John O'Rourke, 62, was walking is dog, as he regularly does, around Mondo Pond when when he warned some kids to be careful out on the thin ice.

Seconds later, a 10-year-old boy crashed through the ice.

"You see this little tiny round face, his chin up on the ice and his little hands sticking up," recalled O'Rourke, who said the boy was screaming, "I'm going to die."

O'Rourke then grabbed a long stick and carefully, but quickly, made his way toward the boy, until he also fell through the ice. But, he reached the boy, put him on his shoulders, and got him safely up onto the ice.

"Then I was yelling to him to lay flat and wiggle his way to shore, which is exactly what he did," said O'Rourke.

But, O'Rourke needed help himself. And police arrived just in time with a long rope with a rescue ring attached.

"He was able to reach out and grab it and then they pulled him right across the ice," said patrolman Michael DeVito.

Police say the larger the body of water, the more the thickness of the ice can vary from area to area.

"You have to be very leery of the ice this time of year because you get some cold nights, but you also get some warming during the day," said DeVito.

The boy's parents were not available for an interview, but issues a statement reading, in part, that thin ice was "One talk that we never thought to have with our children and this situation could have been gravely different."

The 10 year old boy's brother was standing on shore watching as O'Rourke made his heroic rescue.