They saved an 11-year-old girl from drowning, which earned them a Hamilton honor

Two women who saved an 11-year-old girl as she was in danger of drowning in the Great Miami River were saluted Wednesday by Hamilton City Council.

Mayor Pat Moeller read a proclamation honoring Jennifer Nye and Holly Osborne of the city’s Dayton Lane neighborhood for what Moeller called “a very courageous and where-seconds-mattered situation” on the afternoon of Memorial Day.

Nye, Osborne and others from the neighborhood had gathered close to the river near the Soldiers, Sailors and Pioneers monument to celebrate Bob Sherwin, a historic preservationist who did much to help their neighborhood and a historic log cabin near the monument when they heard yelling.

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A man started toward the drowning girl but realized he couldn’t get to her and turned around when a girl yelled to the adults, “Why are you all just standing around and watching?”

That prompted Nye to swim and save the girl, who had briefly vanished under the water. Osborne helped her bring the girl to shore.

“If not for Jennifer Nye, there was a great probability of the young girl drowning,” the proclomation reads. “If not for Holly Osborne, there was a clear possibility of two fatalities. And if not for the memorial service for Bob Sherwin, there may not have been people close enough to hear screams for help.”

The proclamation honored them “for their heroic action.”

Nye, the wife of former mayor Tom Nye, told the Journal-News later that week that as she ran down the river levee toward the water, on a day the water didn’t look calm, “All the way down the hill, I was, ‘This is just stupid. I do have a healthy respect for the river.”

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