Teen saves 3 girls, officer from drowning after vehicle sinks in river

Pascagoula Officer Mercer and the three girls were all taken to the hospital. They are now recovering.
Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 9:44 AM CDT
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MOSS POINT, Miss. (WLOX/Gray News) – A teenager in Mississippi jumped into action to save four people when a vehicle drove off a boat launch into the Pascagoula River.

Authorities said the vehicle, which had three teenage girls inside, was about 20 feet from shore before sinking.

“They drove straight under the water,” 16-year-old Corion Evans told WLOX. “Like, only a little bit of the car was still above the water.”

Evans, who’s been swimming since he was 3 years old, said he tossed his shoes, shirt and phone and jumped in.

“I was behind them trying to keep them above water and swim with them at the same time,” Evans said.

Evans helped bring the three girls to shore, along with Moss Point Police Officer Gary Mercer, who responded to the scene and swam out to help.

“I turned around. I see the police officer. He’s drowning. He’s going underwater, drowning, saying, ‘Help!’” Evans said. “So, I went over there. I went and I grabbed the police officer and I’m like swimming him back.”

Mercer and the three girls were taken to the hospital for treatment and are now recovering.

“The police department and I commend Mr. Evans’s bravery and selflessness he displayed by risking his own safety to help people in danger. If Mr. Evans had not assisted, it could have possibly turned out tragically instead of all occupants rescued safely,” Chief Brandon Ashley said in a statement.

One of the girls took to Facebook to show her appreciation by saying Evans, “saved my life right before my last breath.”

Mercer is expected to be back on duty later this week.

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