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MB Firefighter, Good Samaritan Rescue Woman in Ocean off Pier

The female was reported in the water yelling for help when a citizen jumped into the water to provide aid. He and a Manhattan Beach firefighter/lifeguard are being called out for their rescue efforts.

A Good Samaritan and MB Fire Department Captain Dave Shenbaum are being credited with rescuing a "female in the water yelling for help" off the end of the Manhattan Beach Pier Saturday night, said David Carmany, Manhattan Beach city manager, Wednesday.

Shenbaum arrived on the pier within three minutes of the 10:37 p.m. call, assessing the situation, which now included a man who had jumped in the water to help. He was holding the now-unconscious woman's head out of the water while holding onto a rope thrown to him by fishermen. 

According to Carmany, the man yelled to Shenbaum that he could no longer hold the woman. Shenbaum, who is part-time ocean lifeguard with the Los Angeles County Fire Department Lifeguard Division, jumped into the water after using his portable radio to update responding firefighters and passing command to the captain on the engine. Shenbaum was acting as the duty Battalion Chief. 

"Shenbaum took control of the unconscious woman and swam her to shore while performing mouth-to-mouth rescue breathing," said Carmany in the news release.

Paramedics, who were waiting at the waterline and found the woman to be pulseless and non-breathing, administered advanced life support care and resuscitated her. The woman was transported to Little Company of Mary Hospital with a pulse but still unconscious. She was reportedly sitting up and talking a few days later, according to the news release.

Meanwhile, the man who had attempted rescue was still in the water. Firefighters threw him a flotation device, pulling him to the shore from the pier area. He was examined, said Carmany, and found to have minor injuries.

Shenbaum praised the efforts of the citizen rescuer and stated that the woman would not have survived except for the "man’s bravery and heroic efforts" until the fire department arrived, said Carmany.

The Manhattan Beach Police Department, L. A. County Fire Department lifeguards, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter and Hermosa Beach Fire Department Paramedics assisted in the rescue.

Gerry O'Connor November 29, 2012 at 01:31 AM
Anyone who knows MBFD Captain Dave Shenbaum is not surprised. Incredibly impressed, always ... but not surprised. To Captain Shenbaum, and to the unnamed Good Samaritan, your selfless, heroic efforts give our community extra reason to give thanks this holiday season. *Bravo*!!
Denise A. November 29, 2012 at 02:50 PM
Any explanation about why the woman was in the water?
Liz Spear (Editor) November 29, 2012 at 04:36 PM
She was apparently distraught and had jumped in.
Liz Spear (Editor) November 29, 2012 at 04:37 PM
The heroic fisherman who risked his life to jump in the cold ocean water at night is Royce Butterfield, obviously a very caring man.
Phil M November 29, 2012 at 05:09 PM
It tells you a lot about a person who doesn’t think but just acts. What a great guy and I am glad he is a part of those who protect and serve us. Thanks, ________________________________________ Find a Career College near you, www.americolleges.com
Luiz Morizot-Leite November 30, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Daniel Martinez, - please commend your Captain for me. Tell him he should work as an Ocean Rescue Lifeguard with me. Job well done. Dunga
Randy Leaf November 30, 2012 at 06:33 AM
Royce Butterfield should be commended for risking his life for this woman. Too many times, potential rescuers drown while trying to rescue others. The ocean is deceiving, and much more dangerous than she appears! Captain Shenbaum should also be commended. Thankfully, he was one of the first responders and was able to provide life support to her while rescue swimming her back to shore. Although he is a part-time Ocean Lifeguard (thank goodness) he still risked his life when he jumped into the ocean without his lifeguard rescue float, and assistance from other Ocean Lifeguards. Luckily, everyone made it back to shore.
Jordan November 30, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Great job everyone. I'm greatful to work side by side with people like Shenbaum everyday and happy to see that the community still has good samaritans like Royce. Keep it up Shenbaum and Royce. Both deserve a commendation, they both risked their lives!

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