Janesville34.8°

Brodhead lifeguard saves baby

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GINA R. HEINE
July 28, 2011
— Mitchel Wiesenberg, 19, is working his fourth summer as a lifeguard at the Brodhead pool, but he never thought he’d have to save a child from the nearby river.

Wiesenberg’s quick actions Tuesday saved a 4-month-old from drowning in the Race, a manmade river that splits off the Sugar River and runs next to the municipal pool.


Wiesenberg and city Parks and Recreation Director Wade Boegli recalled the rescue:


A mother was loading other children into a vehicle after swimming lessons. A stroller holding the baby started rolling downhill. By the time the woman realized what was going on, the stroller was nearly in the river.


Wiesenberg was on his way home just before 11 a.m. when people came running up the hill and someone yelled, “We need a lifeguard, there’s a baby in the river.”


“I dropped everything I had in my hands and ran,” he said.


Wiesenberg said the mother was struggling to keep the baby above the water, so he jumped in and pulled the infant out. Other lifeguards came to help and called 911.


The baby was underwater for a bit, Wiesenberg said, but it was able to breathe and cry. An ambulance took the baby to a local hospital to be checked out, he thought.


“Everything turned out good. We’re really proud of him,” Boegli said of Wiesenberg.



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