Tragedy was avoided at Medford's Wright's Pond earlier this summer when an unconscious 3-year-old girl was pulled from the water by two other young swimmers and revived by lifeguards, according to city officials.
Semrawit Ghebrelul spent a day in the hospital after the Aug. 17 incident, but has fully recovered. Her rescuers were presented with Keys to the City by Medford Mayor Michael McGlynn Friday.
Sky Trapella, 12, and Sophie Bendoch, 10, were swimming at the city-operated area in the afternoon on Aug. 17 when they noticed a young girl submerged in the water and not moving. Bendoch touched the girl, and she didn't respond. That's when Trapella started shouting for her father, Emanuel.
"I wasn't scared, I was just thinking, 'Okay, I've got to get my dad," she said.
Her father ran to the water and help pull her ashore. She was unconscious and her lungs were full of water. Lifeguards performed CPR and she began to breath again. Ghebrelul's mother, Eden, went into shock and also had to be taken to the hospital by ambulance.
On Friday, Ghebreulul's father, Michael, thanked the young women who spotted her daughter submerged in the water.
"I am so, so grateful you were here," he said. "If you were not here, my daughter wouldn't be with us today."
McGlynn commended the young girls and lifeguards.
"Because of their heroic actions that little girl is still alive and here with us," McGlynn said. "There was nobody who panicked, everything went off like clockwork."