D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - A quiet, reserved D'Iberville restaurant owner has been thrust into the limelight for saving an infant from drowning at a nearby laundromat.
News outlets from Alabama to New York have been talking about the rescue that wouldn't have happened without him.
He and the friend who helped him say they were just meant to be there. Adams blushed when the City of D'Iberville honored their heroism at last week's city council meeting.
And so we honor Mike Adams Junior and Jeff Russell of D'Iberville as South Mississippi Heroes.
Mike Adams helps run his family business Mikey's Cafe' and Oyster House in D'Iberville. Known for their award winning seafood and friendly service, they are now getting national recognition for a very different reason. Adams is being hailed a hero.
"A hero, that's your fire and your police and military," Adams said. "They lay their life on the line, that's a hero."
He doesn't really like to accept that title. He gives the credit to someone else.
"God does, you know, he handles things in his own way. I guess it was just us that night meant to be there at the right time. A few more seconds, nobody would have been in here."
You see, he's almost always gone by 8:30. But on November 10th, he was taking his time sweeping up and locked the front doors to leave when a woman screaming in Spanish started banging on the glass.
"She didn't speak any English whatsoever. And when I heard 'baby' and she was pointing to the laundromat, that's when I got my waitress who was with me here that night to call 9-1-1."
While Jamie Suddeth called for help, Adams ran to the laundromat next door and saw a tiny baby trapped inside a moving washer filled with hot, soapy water, everyone was hysterical.
He grabbed the handle and tried to get the locked washing machine door open, but couldn't. That's when co-worker Jeff Russell showed up from next door, together they were able to free the severely injured 7-month-old baby boy.
Russell said, "I was kind of in shock. That was something I have never seen before and never want to see again."
They say it was a horrible, sickening sight.
"It's something you would never want to see. A baby, he was just purple, blood, coming from its head," Adams remembered. "It was a terrible, terrible thing to see a child that young."
They turned him over, trying to clear his lungs until the ambulance arrived. Amazingly, little Valle Hernandez survived. Both of the men who saved him say anyone would have done the same thing.
"We're just human beings. You would think anybody in that position would have done that," Adams said.
"I don't really feel like a hero," Russell said. "Just feel like I was, both of us and the other lady that was with us, put in that spot at the right time."