2 Boys Rescued After Falling Through Ice in Greenwich

Greenwich firefighters rescue two boys who fell through the ice of a Willowmere Avenue pond in the Riverside section of Greenwich Jan. 23, 2014. Police and firefighters can be seen on shore at right of photo. Contributed photo.
Greenwich firefighters rescue two boys who fell through the ice of a Willowmere Avenue pond in the Riverside section of Greenwich Jan. 23, 2014. Police and firefighters can be seen on shore at right of photo. Contributed photo.
By Barbara Heins, Greenwich Patch

Update: 3:45 p.m., Jan. 23

Eighty-nine-year-old Paul Palmer said he had a bad feeling when he saw two boys start to walk onto the icy pond at the end of Willowmere Avenue in the Riverside section of Greenwich.

"I've rescued four people and many dogs over the years. I've lived here for 45 years," said Palmer, who's also a former chief for the Sound Beach Volunteer Fire Department. "I yelled out to them and told them to stay off the ice. They told me 'Mind your own business.' I just had a feeling and I kept an eye on them," Palmer said a half-hour after the boys were pulled from the ice by members of the Greenwich Fire Department.

Palmer said he called 911 after seeing the unidentified boys on the ice. Fire rescue crews and Greenwich Police were dispatched to the pond about 1:15 p.m. 

The boys "were partially submerged and stuck in the broken ice. When GFD and GPD arrived, GFD donned their wetsuits and rescued the two male juveniles from the water," said Sgt. Tim Hilderbrand. "GPD and GEMS ( Greenwich Emergency Medical Service) mete them at the water's edge and began treatment."

The pair was brought to Stamford Hospital for treatment.
"It was excellent coopertion between the three services to bring this a successful and safe conclusion," Hilderbrand added.

A firefighter estimated the boys were about 40 feet from shore. A couple residents walking by the scene estimated the pond is about three-feet deep. 

One resident said that the brackish water takes longer to freeze than fresh water. "Perhaps they were drawn to the ice because we had an ice skating party after the last freeze. But it hasn't been cold long enough for it to freeze this time," said the resident.

"It's beautiful skating when it does freeze," Palmer said.

The boys weren't the only ones who needed rescuing Wednesday afternoon. After the the rest of the emergency crews left the scene, the crew of Engine 5 waited for a repair truck from the Greenwich Department of Public Works Fleet Division.

When the crew drove over a six-inch speed bump on the narrow waterfront lane, the truck's oil pan was damaged. A trail of oily puddles soiled the snow-covered road. 

"We caught the speed bump on the way in," said a firefighter. When asked about the damage, he replied, "You're not thinking about that when you hear it's two kids through the ice, in the water."

While a repair crew assessed the damage, Sebastian Dostmann of the Cos Cob Fire Police Patrol spread a kitty litter like substance across the roadway.

Original story: 2:07 p.m., Jan. 23
Two boys were rescued by Greenwich Fire Department crews after falling through the ice of a brackish pond on Willowmere Avenue in Riverside early Wednesday afternoon.

The boys were taken to Stamford Hospital for treatment.

Greenwich Patch will have updates as more details become available.
Christian Terrones January 23, 2014 at 04:58 PM
let them drown next time!!!
Steve Sasloe January 24, 2014 at 09:12 AM
Ann Gramson-Hill January 24, 2014 at 11:16 AM
Dear Mr. Christian Terrones, Did you read the article before posting your callous comment? It said, "2 boys". And they were behaving like two typical adolescents: Mouthing off to their elders like most kids who think that "old people" don't know anything, while simultaneously navigating through the age range of believing that one is invincible. Most kids figure out before the age of 30 that they are not invincible. It is a pity that the fire department had to respond to this kind of call, but THANK GOD they did, and they responded heroically. These boys have probably learned a lot, and unless they are suffering from something other than "adolescence", will probably grow-up to be useful citizens. On the other hand, Mr. Terrones, the fact that you would even write, "let them drown" suggests that you might be in need of some help. There are medications available for people with your level of hatred, perhaps a discussion with your primary care physician would be beneficial.
Christian Terrones January 24, 2014 at 07:42 PM
"Learned a lot"???? I doubt it.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »