Good Samaritans Save Elderly Man in Submerged Vehicle For Immediate Release November 4, 2015 Santa Rosa Beach, Fla— An elderly United States Marine Corps veteran, George Bartlett Ruden Jr. , went on an “unexpected adventure” Wednesday morning and now two Walton County residents are to thank for his rescue. The 87-year-old man got turned around while driving in the rain in the area of Bay Circle Drive in Santa Rosa Beach and found himself driving off the end of a boat ramp and into the channel leading out to the Choctawhatchee Bay. Frank Davis and one of his neighbors, Jason Timberlake, who live on West Hewett Drive noticed the car quickly submerging into the water. “I looked over at Jason and said ‘Come look at this,’” said Davis. “I couldn’t believe it.” Both men quickly jumped in the water and waded over to the vehicle. “He was calm for the most part,” said Davis of Ruden during the incident. “Until the water started coming up to his chest, then you could see he started to get nervous.” The two men were able to get the door to the car open once the engine turned off and brought the man to Davis’s home. The men quickly covered Ruden with towels and called WCSO. “It was just one of those things that was meant to be,” said Davis. “We normally would never be home at that time.” Ruden’s family members were notified and his son came to the home on West Hewett and thanks, handshakes, and smiles were exchanged. South Walton Fire District EMT’s went to the man’s home and brought him a dry change of clothes. “We have some of the best citizens around,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “Thank God for happy endings and their quick thinking.” Florida Highway Patrol worked the crash and a towing service was brought in to remove the vehicle from the water.