South MS Heroes make a dramatic rescue

By Rebecca Powers – bio | email

D'IBERVILLE, MS (WLOX) - The two police officers who rescued a young woman from drowning in the Tchoutacabouffa River were recognized by the city of D'Iberville for their quick thinking and heroism. Carrie McGill, 19, and her very grateful parents say she is alive today because of them.

That's why we honor Officers Michael Knapp and Chris Roberts as South Mississippi Heroes.

Carrie McGill saw a police officer on Lamey Bridge Road checking the river stages and tried to slow her car down, but the road was wet.

"I hit the breaks and they locked up, and I lost control, and I was in the water," McGill remembered. "Like that, it was over with."

Michael Knapp was the officer on the bridge who saw it all happen. He radioed for help immediately. He then threw in a life jacket with what he calls impossible accuracy on a very windy day. He said he truly believes he witnessed a miracle.

"God helped out; There's no other way," Knapp said. "I couldn't make that throw. One in a million. If I would throw it now, it would carry."

"He had perfect aim, cause it landed right in my arms," McGill said. "And as soon as I got it wrapped up in my arms, the car sucked me under with it."

But the life jacket pulled her up to the surface where she said she saw another "angel" standing on the bridge.

"Officer Roberts was there," McGill said.

Roberts jumped into the freezing water, fighting the swift currents to get to her.

Her parents, Russell and Lori McGill, are in awe of the courage it must take to risk life and limb for a stranger. To them, Officers Knapp and Roberts really were heaven sent.

"God couldn't helped us anymore," Russell and Lori McGill said. "What he did today by having his angels watch over her."

They know it takes true heroism to do what these fine officers do every day, not for the pay, but the payoff of helping another.

"It's a great feeling. I don't know how to explain it. It really is a great feeling," Roberts said.

At just 19, Carrie McGill feels she has a new lease on life and will never take a single day for granted. She will also never look at police officers the same way.

"I think they're amazing, I really do. Thank you," McGill said. "Cause if it wasn't for them, I probably wouldn't be sitting here. I really wouldn't."

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