Tired of all the bad news in America? Here’s a story that may just restore your faith in humanity. A woman reportedly broke her back and her foot when she jumped into the water to rescue a boy who was struggling against a rip current in Florida on Saturday.
Hanna Pignato is the hero of this story. She reportedly heard the boy’s mother screaming while working as a waitress at Joe’s Crab Shack in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The 19-year-old waitress decided to step in to help and quickly jumped off the pier where the restaurant is located.
“I surf and I swim, so I thought, I can get to that kid,” Pignato told Fox 35 Orlando. “I don’t even remember taking off my shoes and then I just jumped.”
Unfortunately, a sandbar was right below the pier where Pignato jumped. She landed on a spot that had less than 3 feet of water and she broke her foot and her back immediately.
Pignato said she felt “excruciating pain, excruciating pressure, agony,” but she still tried to swim to the boy.
“I wasn’t gonna give up but I knew I wasn’t going to save him at that point, which really broke my heart and I was just broken hearted,” she said.
There is now a GoFundMe page set up by her friends. It indicates that Pignato swam towards the boy until she saw someone else rescue him. She had to be rescued out of the water herself before she was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.
The GoFundMe page said she fractured her lower back in three places and broke the top of her right foot and her right heel.
According to the page, Pignato doesn’t have insurance and lives in a third-story apartment that does not have an elevator. She will be spending the next few months at home and won’t be able to work.
“She has an amazing support system and is overwhelmingly appreciative of everyone who has been, and will be there for her. Thank you infinitely,” the page said.
Pignato told Fox 35 Orlando that she’s been overwhelmed by the support and encouragement she’s had.
“So many people are reaching out to me, from all over, and I didn’t think that just trying to help somebody, I would get so much love, that’s not what I was trying to do, I was just trying to help him,” she told the local news outlet.