DANIA BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Easter Sunday held more than a few surprises for a man who rescued two teen girls who were drowning off the coast in Dania Beach.
Cellphone video captured Ariel Altagracia rushing to the rescue of two young girls at the Dania Beach Pier, Sunday.
“I just dropped everything,” Altagracia said. “Threw my phone — broke my phone — took my hat off, my glasses and jumped from the pier.”
Altagracia was fishing off the pier when two girls got swept away by the current. Altagracia’s wife, Kayri Pozo heard their cries for help.
“I see the girls, I think they’re just playing, and I see one of the girls go down, and I’m like, ‘Uh, oh, this is serious,’ and then I hear the scream for help.” said Pozo.
Pozo told her husband to go save the two girls. “He literally took everything off, threw his phone, jumped in,” she said.
Jeannie Alvarez, who was waiting tables on the Pier, heard the girls yelling and saw Altagracia jump in. “He grabbed both girls, and you could see one of the girls was going unconscious,” Alvarez said.
The girls would be OK, and would later go to Altagracia’s home to present him with a card and balloons as a thank you.
However, Altagracia ruptured a tendon when he jumped to the rescue. Despite now having to wear a cast, Altagracia said he wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.
“It felt natural, I guess. I don’t know, instinct,” Altagracia said, “just jumped, could be my daughter, you know?”
The two girls threw a small party for Altagracia as well, all in an effort to thank him for the rescue.
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