LOUISIANA, USA — Sunday night, Lake Pontchartrain was lined with boats off the Mandeville lakefront to celebrate Independence Day. After the firework show was over, a Mandeville family's night took an unexpected turn when they decided it was time to drive his boat home.
“Started going and the first wave went over the hull and I knew it was more water than what it needed to be,” said Matthew, the owner of the boat who decided not to share his last name.
Matthew, along with his wife, nine year-old-son and one-year-old son were plunged into the water about six feet deep after their flatboat flipped due to the choppy waters.
“Anything can happen, and it will happen quick,” Mathew said.
Both children were wearing life jackets, but the baby’s lifejacket slipped off upon entering the water. Nobody was injured.
“I wasn’t worrying about the boat... I wasn’t worrying about what was in the boat… you can’t take back your family ya know,” Mathew said.
Matthew's first instinct was to save his children.
“I was just holding the baby above me above the water,” Matthew said.
Thankfully, there was another boat about 30 feet away that came to the family’s rescue.
“Next thing we know we hear screams for help,” said Kevin Mumphrey, driver of the rescuing boat.
Mumphrey and the four other people on the boat quickly reacted to the situation.
“I jumped in the water and went for the boat, brought the smallest kids in first,” Jaime Teachout said.
They were able to pull the family out of the water, bringing them to safety.
“I’m just glad that we were there in the right place at the right time,” Teachout said.
Just over a month ago on Memorial Day, a similar situation occurred where a 33-year-old man’s boat capsized. Unfortunately, the man did die, and his body was recovered from the lake.
Boaters like Mumphrey know that this is a possible boating situation and urges people to stay cautious when driving through rough waters.
“Be leery of the size of the vessel your using and the conditions of the water,” Mumphrey said.
Unlike other accidents, there were no injuries and the family was found today back at the lake to retrieve their boat and offered gratitude to the strangers turned heroes who helped save their lives.
“I’m just glad it was a happy ending for a change,” Mumphrey said.
The families called 911 and EMS was sent to make sure the baby was okay. No one was hurt and they did not require hospitalization.