Boy reunited with police officers who rescued him from ice on pond in Livingston

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Boy reunited with police officers who rescued him from ice on pond in Livingston
Toni Yates reports on the ice rescue in Livingston, NJ.

LIVINGSTON, New Jersey (WABC) -- A boy was reunited with the police officers responsible for saving him from thin ice at a pond in New Jersey.

Thanks to Livingston Police Officers Sean Whalen and David Cordero, 12-year-old Nicholas is alive and can tell the story of how he fell through ice, and made it out.

On Feb. 5, it had warmed enough to soften the ice at Littell's Pond. Nicholas didn't know that when he ran onto the ice to retrieve his basketball.

"For the first minute I thought it was a joke, I was mostly worried about my phone and my wallet and stuff," he said. "Then after trying two or three times, I'm like, I'm stuck," he said, speaking exclusively with Eyewitness News.

His friends were recording when it happened. Officer Whalen was first to respond.

"I tried to get him to calm down and initially tried to get him to put his hands on the ice and hoist himself out," said Whalen. "That didn't really work."

Officer Cordero pulled up. Everyone on the force knows this ESU officer carries a rope all the time.

"I saw Sean there, I handed him the rope and said you're going to throw it way better than I can," he said. "He just gave it a good throw and lucky enough it reached him."

"My biggest fear was that I would get hypothermia, clench up and then fall down and drown," said Nicholas.

Nicholas was taken to the hospital and wrapped in warm blankets to make sure he was okay. His parents were certainlyl relieved, and Nicholas was able to share his story with classmates.

Police Chief Gary Marshuetz praised his officers' actions. "I'm proud of them and I'm proud of their service," he said.

He said the incident also serves as an important lesson about frozen lakes. "We would like to remind parents to sit and have this conversation with their children," said Marshuetz.


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