Vermont state troopers jump into icy pond to rescue 8-year-old girl

A young girl is back home and has recovered after she fell into an icy pond last month in Cambridge, Vermont.

CAMBRIDGE, Vt. — An 8-year-old girl is back home and has recovered after she fell into an icy pond last month in Cambridge, Vermont.

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The Vermont State Police said the incident happened on Dec. 17 just before 9 a.m. when a girl and some of her siblings were playing by a pond on private property. The thin ice on the pond gave way and two of the siblings fell into the water.

One of the children was pulled to safety by the 80-year-old homeowner but the other child was further away from the shore so the homeowner called 911, police said.

Trooper Michelle Archer was on routine patrol at the time and responded to the incident at the pond. WCAX obtained dash camera and bodycam video that showed Archer grabbing a floating device and roping the cruiser before jumping into the pond.

“Just like an adrenaline rush almost before you even get there, something that you know you have to get there as soon as you can,” Archer told the news outlet. “Something took over and I just kicked into gear. I don’t know if it was my training or instinct, but panic wasn’t a thought at that moment.”

Minutes later, Archer swam out of the pond with the girl, WCAX reported.

“Right here is when I pull her actually out of the water and that’s when I’m thinking to start CPR if needed,” Archer recalled, according to the news outlet.

Trooper Keith Cote arrived at the pond minutes after Archer got the girl out. “For Michelle to have carried this young girl with completely saturated clothes in the shape that she was in, as cold as she was, I don’t know if anybody would be able to do that. So, that I was dry and warm -- priority of life for the little girl was number one,” Cote said, according to WCAX.

The girl was taken to the hospital to be treated. Police said, according to The Associated Press, that her injuries at first were believed to be life-threatening. She has since made a full recovery and is back home.

Troopers Archer and Keith Cote and the homeowner “for their selfless, heroic conduct, and all three have been recommended to receive the agency’s Lifesaving Award,” state police said, according to the AP.