Port Huron officer leaps in to river to rescue 2 girls

Blake Alsup
The Detroit News

A Port Huron police officer rescued two young girls who were swept away on a sandbar in the St. Clair River on Thursday night.

Port Huron police Cadet Joseph Holzberger heard the girls, ages 9 and 13, calling for help while he was on duty at the city's fireworks show about 8 p.m. Thursday, according to police.

The girls were swimming before the fireworks began when they were swept away from a sandbar. Their feet could no longer reach the bottom and they went under the water as they drifted south.

Holzberger was on foot in the area and heard their calls for help. He removed his radios, notified another cadet he was going in and swam out to the sand bar, where he was able to pull the children to safety, according to a police statement.

Police said the girls' parents were not at the location at the time and Child Protective Services was notified.

"The St. Clair River is a dangerous river to swim in without any type of flotation device," Port Huron police said. "Do not let your children swim in the river without keeping an eye on them."