CHARLOTTE, NC (WSOC/CNN) – A little boy with autism has two heroes to thank after he fell into a lake in North Carolina.
The men just happened to be nearby and sprung into action.
Scott Lingerfelt and Jason Southerland are thankful they were working at a home along Lake Hickory when they heard the 6-year-old boy’s yell for help across the cove.
Lingerfelt dove into the frigid water with his work clothes on while Southerland scrambled to drive to the home where the child fell in.
“It was cold. I said lord you gotta help me with it. Give me the strength to get across there,” Lingerfelt recalled. “As I got across I could see him and started talking with him saying bud you’re gonna be okay. We’re gonna get to you.”
The boy’s mother, Jan Bentley, said her son has autism and sometimes wanders off. She said when she spotted her son in the water, she quickly drove back to her home down the road to get his older brother who was visiting because she can’t swim.
“I was wondering if he was dying because I couldn’t save him. I’m a panicker and I panicked,” Bentley said.
Deputies said it was the older brother who pulled the little boy out of the water.
They are calling all of the men heroes.
“God put us there at the right place at the right time. I was doing something I hope someone would do for my boy,” said Lingerfelt.
But mother and son are thankful the men risked their lives to help a child they didn’t even know.
“Trying to get there to save him was amazing to me like for someone to jump across that river,” said Bentley.
The men will be honored next week at the sheriff’s office.