Norman Teen Saves Two People From Drowning

Monday, May 30th 2016, 5:19 pm
By: Aaron Brilbeck

A grandfather died Memorial Day weekend while trying to save his granddaughter Saturday, but it could have been a lot worse if not for a fast thinking teenager.

Levi Rosser, 15, is a hero, but he's struggling with it.

This weekend, Levi was jet skiing with a friend on Lake Eufaula when he saw another jet ski wipe out with a man and a little girl on board.

"It didn't look like a bad wreck or anything,” Levi said. “Until I noticed them kind of like waving."  

Levi headed over and saw the little girl.  

"She was freaking out. She was like ‘I can't swim. I can't swim.’ And she was like throwing her arms around and crying and stuff like that," Levi said.

Beneath the 8-year old, and just below the surface of the water her grandfather, 45-year old Michael Waldo, of McAlester, was holding her up.

Levi grabbed the girl just as Waldo let go.  

"I was trying to get her on the sea do and I looked over for a split second he like came up for a second.  He was like unconscious," Levi said.

Moments later, Waldo's face disappeared below the surface of the murky water. Levi brought the little girl to shore and noticed a teenage boy was swimming out to try to help, and that boy began struggling.

Levi’s mother, Shannon Strickland, said her son got back on the jet ski and rescued the teen.

“And he got out there and he couldn't go no further.  And he screamed for help and he went and got him too," she said.

Levi knows he saved two people this weekend.  But he can't seem to get Waldo's face, as it disappeared beneath the water, out of his mind.

"They did their best and that’s what I keep trying to tell them is to hold their heads high,” Strickland said. “They saved a little girls life and be proud of that."

Police say Waldo and his granddaughter were not wearing life vests. Waldo’s body was found Sunday in about 30 feet of water.