What began Tuesday, August 14, as two sisters, wading in the Weber River next to Riverside Park, despite warnings from their grandparents, quickly evolved into a near tragic event. Both girls, Adrian, 12, and Bailey, 13, soon realized the water was deeper than they had thought and struggled to get out of the river. Adrian was able to help Bailey out of the water before being pulled into the current and downstream. As Adrian was pulled to the opposite side of the river, she managed to catch a branch and some weeds and held on to avoid being swept farther away. With Adrian struggling to hold on, Bailey quickly dialed 911 from the bank as she helplessly watched her sister.
UHP Trooper Dan Krum heard the dispatch call asking for troopers in Morgan and didn’t see any active troopers in the area, but then he realized that off duty trooper Justin Adams was nearby at Morgan Middle School helping his wife, new teacher, Aubrey Loveland Adams, set up her sixth-grade classroom.
Krum called Adams and he immediately drove from Morgan Middle School to the park, peeled off his shoes, jumped in the river and floated down to the young girl who had expended all of her energy and was about lose her grip on the branch and be swept away by the current. Adams stood in water up to his shoulders to rescue the girl and safely brought her back to the bank.
Morgan Fire Marshal Dave Rich, as well as a Deputy Sheriff from Morgan County, arrived as Adams brought the girl to shore. Rich helped locate the adolescents’ family. Morgan Fire Department personnel and Morgan Ambulance were also on the scene to assist if needed.
Rich cautioned parents and children alike. “Always be vigilant around the water, and if you are younger, just stay away completely. Even though it a dry year, the river is still dangerous.”
Merla Fife, grandmother of the girls, expressed her gratitude to all involved for their quick response in preventing a tragedy. She also expressed gratitude to the fire department for saving her son’s home the day before in the Lost Creek fires. “It just hasn’t been our family’s week, but we are grateful for all of the assistance given.”