Not your normal 9-to-5: Wilmette Harbor Guardians save lives around the clock

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Bravo Zulu to Guardians at Coast Guard Station Wilmette Harbor, located in Chicago.

At approximately 1 a.m. on Sunday, Seaman Reginald Edwards heard a woman screaming for help through an open window.

“It was so clear and loud and it was piercing,” said Edwards.

While Edwards called 911, two Second Class Petty Officers, Chris Summers and Kevin Ray, both Boatswain’s Mates, rushed outside and ran down the pier in their pajamas to find a young woman who had fallen through the ice.

She was ice clinging to a tire, which was chained to the seawall.

(Right: U.S. Coast Guard Station Wilmette Harbor, the scene of an unorthodox rescue by two pajama-clad Guardians.)

Due to the distance between the ledge and the water, Ray grabbed Summers’ feet and lowered him down until he was able to grab hold of the woman and pull her to safety.

The two rescuers gave up pieces of their own clothing in an attempt to warm the woman up before getting her into a hypothermia capsule and waiting for Emergency Medical Services.

She was taken to Evanston Hospital and was reportedly in stable condition.

The actions of Edwards, Ray and Summers embody the Coast Guard’s motto, Semper Paratus, and set an example for those who are “Always Ready.”

(Above: Petty Officers Chris Summers, Kevin Ray and Seaman Reginald Edwards conduct an interview with CBS News in Chicago explaining their actions on the night of February 21, 2010.)

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