Kayaker thanks good samaritans who saved his life

10:36 PM, Nov 18, 2012   |    comments
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LINDSTROM, Minn. -- Andy Simonette had a chance Sunday to simply say thank you. He's grateful for two men who came to his rescue after his kayak tipped over in South Lindstrom Lake.

"I reached for something too quickly and I went in," recalls Simonette, who says he's an experienced kayaker. "I just kept holding on to the kayak and trying to stay warm in the cold water."

The 26-year-old had been fishing, but seconds later found himself yelling for help, praying he wouldn't freeze to death.

"I felt myself slipping away," he says. "But I had to hang on. I have babies on the way and they need their dad."

Nick Peltier was working on the roof of a house across the lake and heard Andy screaming. It's a good thing Nick is a volunteer fire fighter in the city of Stacy.

"We dropped our tool belts and ran to help," he said.

Peltier and co-worker Jeff Olson, grabbed a neighbor's canoe and used old 2x6' boards as paddles.

"When we got to him we held him up and kept talking to him," says Peltier. "We were in the right place at the right time."

Andy was eventually airlifted to a metro hospital and made a full recovery. He was told the water he was in for several minutes was 34 degrees.

"From now one I have to bring a life jacket with me," said Andy. "I'm so thankful to those guys. There are no words to express how I feel."

(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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