It was a normal day in January when 16 year-old Michael and 12 year-old Jonny Schmitt went on a walk through Moorman Park with their sister, Graceann and her boyfriend, Andrew.
Jonny said, "Then we though it would be fun to go on the ice."
But suddenly, things went terribly wrong. The ice began to give way and Andrew dropped through the ice, into the freezing water.
Michael said, "Then my sister fell in, too, and I knew none of them could get out because the water was deep."
Jonny said, "I was thinking, could this be the end of my sister?"
Jonny called 9-1-1 from the shore, while Michael made a split-second decision and went to help.
Michael said, "The adrenaline took over. I knew they needed help right away so I walked over there, got down on my knees and reached out, the ice kept breaking."
It seems guardian angels were watching that day...allowing Michael to single-handedly pull both of them from the freezing water. They were cold, but otherwise safe. Both boys say they definitely learned from the experience.
Jonny said, "I'll never go out on the ice again. If you want to skate, make sure it's at a skating rink where you're allowed to skate."
Do you think about what could have happened?
Michael said, "We really try not to. We're just lucky that what could have happened didn't happen."
The Quincy city council honored Michael Schmitt at its meeting Monday. Mayor John Spring awarded him a letter of commendation for the rescue, saying Schmitt's quick thinking and bravery prevented a terrible tragedy.