Girl hospitalized after being rescued from Snohomish River

SNOHOMISH — A teenaged girl was hospitalized Monday after being rescued from the Snohomish River.

A kayaker who happened to be in the area helped hold the girl’s head above water until rescuers could reach her.

Firefighters were summoned to the river about 3:17 p.m., said Mike Gatterman, a battalion chief with Snohomish County Fire District 4 in Snohomish.

It wasn’t immediately clear how the girl, who is in her teens, and a young man wound up in the river.

Police found the pair in the water, trapped near a bank close to the Maple Street boat launch, he said.

Rescuers could hear the people in the water but couldn’t see them because of the steep, vegetation choked bank. They eventually extended a ladder, and the man was able to climb out, Gatterman said.

The girl, however, was losing consciousness. Crews talked to a kayaker who paddled out to the girl until the rescue boat could reach her, Gatterman said.

The kayaker, Shelly Allan, 50, Snohomish, had been having a crummy day, she said.

She missed a job interview Monday morning because of a flat tire.

Allan had been kayaking Monday and was chatting with a friend on the bank when she saw the flashing emergency lights, she said. She asked the firefighters what was going on, and then she jumped in her kayak.

“I was in there in like a minute and right on her,” she said.

The girl’s friend had been trying to hold her but was struggling, Allan said.

“He was really cold, and he couldn’t hold her up anymore,” she said.

Allan jumped out and propped her knee against a ledge to keep the girl’s head up, she said.

She rubbed the girl’s back and tried to keep her talking. Rescue crews threw out a life vest, and she wrapped it around the girl as best she could, she said.

The girl was taken to a local hospital, Gatterman said. Her condition wasn’t available Monday evening.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com

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