Bossier City teen commended for saving grandfather's life - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Bossier City teen commended for saving grandfather in boating accident

Posted: Updated: Jan 14, 2014 05:37 PM CST
Sheriff Julian Whittington made a presentation to Cameron on Tuesday afternoon, commending for his heroic and selfless action in rescuing his grandfather. Sheriff Julian Whittington made a presentation to Cameron on Tuesday afternoon, commending for his heroic and selfless action in rescuing his grandfather.
Brett Mattison with grandfather, Harry (Source: Mattison family) Brett Mattison with grandfather, Harry (Source: Mattison family)
BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) -

A Bossier City teen is being honored as a hero by the Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office for his actions in rescuing his grandfather after a boating accident.

Back in October, 18-year-old Cameron Mattison was preparing for an upcoming fishing tournament with his father and 77-year-old grandfather, Harry Mattison.  While they were scouting out different areas to fish, the weather changed suddenly with dipping temperatures and windy conditions.

All three had their life jackets on, as well as rain gear and layers of insulated clothing. At one point, the outboard motor malfunctioned, and the boat went into a spin.  Cameron's grandfather was thrown from the boat head first into the cold water. 

Initially, he wasn't spotted, but he was eventually located some 30 yards away from the boat with his life jacket ripped off of his right side and barely on his left shoulder.  He was in trouble because he was gasping for breath, and with the multiple layers of clothing he had on, the water weight of the soaked clothes was pulling him down. 

Cameron saw that his grandfather needed immediate help and dove into the water, fully clothed, and swam to his grandfather. Cameron was treading water in his tennis shoes, (his life jacket had not inflated yet), but was still able to get his grandfather's  head upright, remove the hoodie from his head and jacket hood and put his arm under his left shoulder.  He was able to get his grandfather to where he could breathe and began back stroking back to the boat.

"At first I really wasn't thinking about it," the teen says. "Just kinda jumped in.  It happened really quick, but after we got back in the boat everything kinda shook up a little bit. I'm glad I did what I did, or we wouldn't be able to have him back."

Harry Mattison was taken to the hospital to be checked out, but did not require further medical attention.

For those actions, Sheriff Julian Whittington made a presentation to Cameron on Tuesday afternoon, commending for his heroic and selfless action in rescuing his grandfather.

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