Tanner Dutton was in the right place at the right time when he recently saved a toddler who was seen floating in water at Scissortail Park in Oklahoma City.
Emergency Medical Services Authority officials honored the 17-year-old on Wednesday for his bravery as an “Everyday Hero.”
“He went above and beyond and risked his own life to save that of a child,” an EMSA official said. “When the time comes and you’re looking to be a lifesaver, come see us, OK?”
Dutton said he was at Scissortail Park with his family, about to leave when he looked out and saw someone floating in the lake.
“At first, what we thought was a kid swimming in the pond we were like, ‘Wait, he’s not supposed to be doing that,’” Dutton said.
The teenager quickly swam 10 feet out into the water to save the drowning boy.
“He was kind of, like, bobbing up and down, gasping for air and flailing his arms,” Dutton said.
Witnesses called 911. The boy could be heard crying in the background after being pulled to safety.
Dutton hit his head while saving the child.
“The emergency people were making sure I was OK,” he said. “‘I’m OK. Just make sure the kid’s fine, first.’”
Dutton’s family said they are proud of him.
“He saved a baby’s life and a mom from her worst nightmare,” a family member said.
The toddler is safe at home thanks to Dutton.
“I didn’t think it’d catch fire and be a big deal,” Dutton said.