LAKE TRAVIS, Texas - The Trump Boat Parade was a long-awaited event on Lake Travis.
Saturday, Christopher Wood was on rescue duty and was called to the event. “About five minutes into it and 500 yards from the starting line, first boat, call for distress went out,” said Wood.
Things escalated quickly, due to a large number of boats on the lake.
The Travis County Sheriff's Office said five boats went down, but Wood believes there were more. “There were so many boats that went down, so many boats in distress and it happened over and over and over,” he said.
Authorities said weather conditions that day were calm, but a large number of boats generated huge waves, that got out of control.
Wood was in the thick of it when he began to see a display of American pride.
“People were stopping to pick people up, they were taking on water, their boats were sinking. They were sacrificing their family's life pulling people in who were drowning," said Wood.
He said he saw neighbors helping neighbors. “They weren’t one way or the other for a particular party. There were other Americans in the water, grabbing and pulling them up, literally I saw it with my own eyes, people jumping in and grabbing the American flag,” said Wood.
Boats were taking on large amounts of water, engines were stalling, and some boats capsized, but no lives were lost. Wood wants this display of heroism and togetherness to be the norm, especially in an election year.
“The people of this community stepped up and hit it out of the ballpark. I've been in the Marine Corps, I’ve been a fireman, I'm telling you Saturday was the proudest I’ve ever been to be an American,” said Wood.