‘Hold on to me, I’ll get us all to safety’ – Hero officer describes saving teens from river

CANTON — A Canton police officer is being credited for saving teens who became stranded in a swollen river.

Officer Luis Salas went to help when he was called to the Etowah River Park Tuesday around 6:30 p.m. Police dispatch told him two teens had fallen into the river and couldn’t get out.

“I took off my gear, took my belt off quickly and vest off,” Salas said.

He jumped into the river and began wading in the water until he caught up to the two teens. The teens were desperately holding onto a branch.

Salas said the teens were panicking.

“I tell them calmly, ‘Hey I’m officer Salas. I’m here to help you. I need y’all to trust me with your lives. Please just trust me and calm down so we can all three of us can go home,’” Salas said.

Salas said one of the teens told him she couldn’t swim.

Luckily, other officers arrived at the scene and threw a buoy to the teens, and with the help of everyone involved, the teens and Salas made it out of the water safely.

Salas said his instincts took over when he jumped into the water. He said he’s a trained Marine, so he’s taken swimming courses.

The teens were later treated and released in good health.

Canton Officer Rescues Teens From River

Please help us thank Officer Luis Salas for his heroic action! Incident Information: Where: Etowah River Park (canoe ramp) 600 Brown Industrial Pkwy, Canton, GA 30114 When: Tuesday, April 21, 2020, at approximately 6:30 pm.

Posted by Canton Police Department, GA on Monday, April 27, 2020
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