On Saturday, September 21, Officer John McCarthy was patroling the beach front at Jones Beach State Park. State Park Police Communications had received a 911 call from a person on the beach front reporting that two persons were in the ocean and having difficulty staying afloat and were in apparent danger; there were no lifeguards on duty.
Officer McCarthy responded to the scene and observer that there were now four persons in the water in distress. Two other persons who were attempting a rescue had joined the original two vicitms. All four persons were now in distress. Officer McCarthy notified Park Police Headquarters that the situation was critical and requested assistance from the Coast Guard and Police Aviation.
Officer McCarthy then entered the water with a rescue buoy. Officer McCarthy swam out in the rough surf to the victims and worked with them to guide them out of a rip tide and to shore.
One victim had to be carried from the surf and was taken by helicopter to Nassau University Medical Center. Officer McCarthy was exhausted by the rescue efforts and required hospitalization for several days to recover.
Because of his lifesavings actions the Long Island Shields is proud to award ‘Police Officer of the Month for November’ to Park Police Officer John McCarthy.