Photo: Lt. Steve O’Malley poses for photos for the press after rescuing baby from Lake Michigan
An off-duty Chicago firefighter, who was celebrating his wife’s 51st birthday with a ride on his boat, saved a baby who fell into Lake Michigan Saturday afternoon on the South Side.
A lady with a baby strapped in a stroller was standing at the 31st Street Harbor near where Lt. Steve O’Malley, an off-duty firefighter, was working on his boat about 2 p.m., Fire Media Affairs spokeswoman Meg Ahlheim said.
As O’Malley returned from his car to retrieve some tools, he heard the woman screaming that her baby was in the water, Ahlheim said.
O’Malley said he was also on his cellphone speaking with a friend, who is a Chicago Police officer, about a charity boxing event the two departments compete against each other
“I heard her screaming, ‘My baby, my baby!” O’Malley said.
O’Malley said he dropped the cellphone and dived into the water right behind the baby’s father. He saw the stroller positioned sideways in the water and grabbed the yellow T-shirt of the infant he believed to be about 1 year old. The father grabbed the stroller while O’Malley held onto the baby’s T-shirt and both men were able to keep the stroller above water while swimming to a nearby ladder leading out of the water.
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