In the wake of Hurricane Harvey’s devastation, there have been many acts of heroism. One might stand out above the rest: this 13-year-old rescued 13 people using only an air mattress.
The teenager, Virgil Smith, was staying with his mom in an apartment on the second floor of the Dickinson apartment complex in Houston. He received a cry for help from one of his friends who was unable to swim. Smith sprang to action, plunging through the murky floodwaters to his apartment and retrieving an air mattress that his family provides for guests, just to save his friend.
“I put him, his two sisters, one baby and his brother, and I had my other friend by the hand right here, and I set his momma and his step-dad on the air mattress,” Smith told ABC 13.
Smith and two other people pushed the air mattress to the second floor apartment, where the family could take shelter. Smith then dove right back into the water with his mattress, saving an older woman who was confined to a wheelchair and at least five others.
His mother, Lisa Wallace, told ABC 13 that she had faith that her son was going to be just fine as he swam to save other residents in the complex.
“He can rescue, he can swim, and I just had faith in the Lord that everything was gonna be alright,” said Wallace.
When horrific events like Hurricanes Harvey and Irma occur that cause devastation, people can take solace in knowing that there are plenty of good people who brave the rough conditions to save others in need. Virgil Smith’s actions were impressive and heartwarming, especially for a 13-year-old.
Watch ABC 13’s video about it below: