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A Minnesota deputy is thanked by his department for his heroic actions while rescuing two fishermen and a dog.

2 min read.

A Minnesota deputy took it upon himself to rescue two fishermen and a dog believed to be suffering from hypothermia after falling through ice, rather than waiting for additional resources to arrive.

The incident was caught on body camera just after 3:30 p.m. Dec. 3 in the city of Nowthen. When deputies arrived following a call for help, they learned two men and a dog had fallen through the ice while ice fishing, the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office said in a release.

A passerby was reportedly able to get a canoe out to them to get into while waiting for emergency responders to arrive.

Deputy Chris Fjeld decided to start the rescue operation, despite apprehensions from fellow Deputy Curt Grabmeier, before the sheriff’s office marine unit arrived.

“Chris, where you going? Chris, I don’t like it,” Grabmeier, the deputy whose body camera is recording, could be heard saying.

“These guys are hypothermia,” Fjeld was heard saying.

Fjeld was told to wait while his colleague made sure both ends of the tethered rope were tied, prior to him getting on the frozen lake on his belly, and pushing himself out toward the stuck fishermen.

A female officer from St. Francis Police Department working with the deputies then shouted at Fjeld, telling him that firefighters were on their way with a “gumby suit.” But when Fjeld ran out of rope while in the middle of the frozen lake, two others tied additional rope so he could continue.

Fjeld was later pulled toward the shore with one of the fisherman, who then crawled to shore as Fjeld returned to the remaining fisherman and dog.

“We are thankful all involved are ok and are proud of Deputy Fjeld’s selfless actions to help others in need,” Anoka County Sheriff’s Office said.

The department used the incident as an opportunity to remind the community that ice on some Minnesota lakes and ponds is not thick enough to walk on, and doing so puts people at “significant risk of falling through and experiencing hypothermia or death.”