Oswego 8th grader risks life to save another - Mid-South News, Weather, Traffic and Sports | FOX13

Oswego 8th grader risks life to save another

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Zac Thomas (Photo courtesy of Amy Matheson) Zac Thomas (Photo courtesy of Amy Matheson)
Zac Thomas (Photo courtesy of Angela Prusinski) Zac Thomas (Photo courtesy of Angela Prusinski)
Zac Thomas and his brother. (Photo courtesy of Amy Matheson) Zac Thomas and his brother. (Photo courtesy of Amy Matheson)
CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

At first glance, 14-year-old Zac Thomas looks like your typical teenager - and for the most part, he is. But two days ago, he risked his own life to save another.

"I just really told him to grab my hand and I pulled him out and made sure that he was ok," Thomas told FOX 32 News.

Thomas was walking his younger brother home from Fox Chase Elementary School in Oswego when the duo spotted another fourth grader climbing a retention wall before walking on the ice.

"I was thinking to myself, he's going to fall, he's going to fall in," Thomas said. "The ice broke and he fell in. I jumped off my skate board, stopped it, ran down, jumped off of the wall, ran down there and helped him out."

You can still see the foot prints in the snow and the gaping hole where the ice cracked and the child slipped through. Thomas recalls those tense moments.

"Just to get him out and make sure he was ok and really to see if he was hurt," Thomas said. "I asked him questions if he was cold and he said yes of course and he said that he was still shaking."

"A lot of people have asked me if I was worried about him getting hurt himself," Zac's mother Angela Prusinski said. "I didn't really think about that, I thought more about the fact that he helped a child his brother's age to safety… It's scouts, scouts, scouts. I think we're living and breathing it at this point."

Life-skills training the teen learned as a Boy Scout surely helped. But in typical teenager fashion, Thomas says the big rescue is no big deal. 

"Someone might not have ever found him if he fell in, there's a reason he was there that day," Zac's father Paul Prusinski said.

For Zac Thomas it was just another day - though it's one he'll remember.

"He is a hero, yes," his father said.

Fox Chase Elementary School released this statement regarding the rescue:

"Principals are sending reminders to parents and students to be safe on the ice in these weather conditions and we are thankful that no one was injured and that the students are safe."

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