Father drowns while saving daughter

Friday, August 8th 2008, 8:25 pm
By: News 9

By Jennifer Pierce, NEWS 9

MASON, Okla. -- An Okfuskee County man died a hero after drowning moments after he rescued his daughter from a sinking truck Thursday night.

L.T. Piggy's 14-year-old son, L.T. Jr., witnessed the rescue of his 4-year-old sister.

Monsita Piggy, the man's wife, said he enjoyed spending time with his children.

"His whole life revolved around these kids," Monsita Piggy said.

The 51-year-old father-of-three had a 2-year-old granddaughter and loved the outdoors, his job and riding motorcycles.

"I couldn't ask for a better dad," daughter Ketura Thomas said.

Ultimately, L.T. Piggy was a father willing to give his life for his children.

"When it comes to a choice of you or your babies any parent that loves their kids you're going to chose your babies," Monsita Piggy said. "I know that's how he felt."

Monsita Piggy said she's still in shock after losing her husband of 30 years.

"I'm like Lord why, ‘How could this happen to him?'" Monsita Piggy said. "He was a good swimmer."

L.T. Piggy's children were fishing Thursday night at a pond when the family's truck rolled into the pond with the 4-year-old inside the truck bed, according to officials.

L.T. Piggy jumped into the pond to save his daughter, but couldn't escape himself because the force of the water was pulling the truck under. L.T. Jr. tried to rescue him, but could not overcome the force of the water.

"He had him by the hand and it was like a force pulling him," Monsita said.

L.T. Jr. said he had his father, but L.T. Piggy shook him away.

"Told him to go see about his sister and he went under," Monsita said.

Monsita continues to comfort L.T. Jr.

"He's got anger," Monsita said. "He's feeling like, ‘Mama, I tried.'"

The family said they know they have a tough road ahead, but the family continues to remember a loving father and husband.

"I guess what my dad would want us to do is to just go on and just remember the things he taught us," Ketura Thomas said.

L.T. was also a volunteer firefighter. His children attend Mason schools, where students collected donations for the family.