Rescuer’s day about saving lives

A rescue earned Daniel Saylor his own special day last week.

Kaua‘i Mayor Bryan Baptiste presented Saylor and his mom, Dale Jacobs, Thursday with a proclamation honoring the young man’s heroic deed last month when Saylor ignored his personal plight to aid a swimmer in distress off Ke‘e Beach.

Saylor was at Ke‘e on Jan. 11 when a man ran up to him saying, “Help. My wife’s going to die.”

The 8-foot surf was pounding Debra Buie, a California visitor, and she was sucked out to sea through a small channel in the reef.

At that moment, Saylor decided he had no choice, despite the fact he was on crutches and had a cast on one leg from severe foot injuries sustained last fall.

He took off the cast, tossed his crutches and swam to the reef, crossing it in a hand-over-hand crawl.

A large incoming wave luckily washed the woman back toward Saylor, and he grabbed her with one hand while clutching the reef with the other.

Another good Samaritan with a surfboard helped bring the victim to shore while Saylor swam back across the lagoon to the beach.

“Daniel may not think he’s an angel, but God did, and I do, too,” Buie said.

Baptiste proclaimed yesterday “Daniel Saylor Day” because Saylor did what needed to be done, and never asked for any recognition from it.

Alongside Baptiste, Battalion Chief Teddy Williams, Kaua‘i Fire Chief Robert Westerman and Dr. Monty Downs of the Kaua‘i Water Safety Task Force extended the county’s appreciation for his selfless act.

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