It was supposed to be just like any other fun day with her family for 9-year-old, Cecelia Strong. She was spending a summer day with her family and enjoying tubing on the Turkey River. Before she really knew what happened, the current became too much for her.

She told KCRG she was with her aunt and camping with all her family friends and her friends which turned into a day of floating on the Turkey River. Before she knew what was going on, the river had pushed her away from the rest of her family, and she even became separated from her tube.

Dallas Matt grew up near the Turkey River, is familiar with the area, and he noticed when Cecelia started to become separated from her family. He told KCRG

I noticed this little girl was a ways ahead of the rest of the group that they were tubing with and she was going straight into this log jam. Her tube got dislodged from underneath her and she was holding onto the trees asking for help.

Things took a turn for the worse when Cecelia ended up under the water, after trying to hang onto some trees, and at that point, Dallas knew he needed to help. He needed to get across the river to help as Cecelia was underwater that entire time. Luckily, Cecelia was wearing her life vest and it did eventually bring her back up to the surface where Dallas was able to grab her and pull her out.

She told KCRG she credits Dallas for saving his life and had he not done anything, she might've never got out.

If Dallas wasn’t there I probably wouldn’t have got out. Thank you to Dallas for saving my life

This close call is a great reminder for everyone that a life jacket and help save your life. If you're under the age of 13 you must wear a life jacket at all times while on a boat, canoes, kayaks, and paddleboards according to Iowa DNR.

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