INTERVIEW: Hero trooper describes harrowing water rescue in Fishkill

The Wappinger-based state trooper who saved a man in Dutchess County last month during a water rescue is speaking with News 12 about the harrowing ordeal.

Blaise Gomez

Sep 13, 2022, 9:27 PM

Updated 578 days ago

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The Wappinger-based state trooper who saved a man in Dutchess County last month during a water rescue is speaking with News 12 about the harrowing ordeal. 
“This was probably one of the most critical experiences I’ve ever experienced on the job,” said Trooper Francis Rush. 
The Troop K rescuer is seen during several intense moments in police body camera video,  jumping into a pond in Fishkill to save a man who was trapped inside his car after driving in during a medical emergency. 
Rush says the 22-year-old victim’s car was partially submerged in the water off Westage Drive and that a good Samaritan was trying to help when he arrived. 
“We tried to extricate him through the rear window but the window punch wasn’t working because of the way the car was and how far down the vehicle was,” said Rush. “By the grace of God, the sunroof just dislodged, and we saw this massive bubble come up. That’s when I grabbed him and began to swim back to shore.” 
State police say the victim, 22-year-old Anthony Thomas, was taken to the hospital by ambulance and has since made a full recovery.  


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