A 16-year-old boy jumped into a freezing Arizona lake to try and rescue a man who drove his SUV into the water on Wednesday, according to several outlets.
Ethan Cakmak jumped into action after learning a man had driven into a neighborhood lake near his apartment complex near Dobson and Queen Creek roads in Chandler, Arizona, ABC15 reported.
Erkan Cakmak, the teen’s father, told FOX10 that he was working from home and heard “a plump” from his balcony door and spotted the car in the lake.
“I realized that he needed help, he might drown. So, I ran outside, through the gate, took my shirt off, took everything out of my pockets and I jumped into the water,” Ethan Cakmak said.
The teen “sprung into the water” as his father called 911.
When Ethan swam out to the car, he noticed the man inside was passed out but breathing, ABC15 reported.
“I looked through the window and I see the guy with his chin on his chest bobbing up and down because he was breathing, which is good because that means he’s alive, but his eyes were closed, and he wasn’t responding to any banging on the window,” the teen told FOX10.
The car had stopped sinking, but Ethan was unable to break a window to help get the man out. He swam back to shore.
Teen believes it’s important to help others
First responders arrived and pulled the man out of the water, ABC15 reported. The driver, who has not been identified, was taken to the hospital for evaluation, FOX10 reported.
Chandler Police Sgt. Ricky Gonzales told FOX10 he commended the father and son duo for stepping up to help.
“I think that’s awesome. It goes to show that we’re out here looking out for each other. Not just us, PD and fire, but also our private citizens,” Gonzales said. “That’s pretty cool.”
The teen told ABC15 that helping others is important to him and is one of “his values.”
“People need help sometimes and you should be as a community there for each other,” Ethan told ABC15.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Teen in Arizona tried to save a man whose car went into a lake