On Sunday January 28 at 6:41 p.m. the Brewster Fire Department was dispatched by the Brewster Police to Breakwater Beach for a female party in the water. Ambulance 243, Engine 234, Car 231 (Chief Moran), and Car 232 (Deputy Chief Varley) responded to the scene. On arrival Captain Anthony Dalmau reported three individuals in the water (one student and two staff members of the Latham School) with the student refusing to come to shore. He immediately requested Engine 234 to prepare rescue swimmers to enter the dark, cold, wind-driven water and conduct a rescue of the individuals. Captain Dan Kimball and FF Chad Foakes donned suits and entered the bay to effect the rescue. The two staff members self-evacuated with assistance from the water however the female student continued to move off shore with the rescue swimmers following until such time they lost sight of her in the choppy waters approximately 150 yards from shore.
Chief Moran set up a command post in the parking lot of the beach landing and assigned Captain Dalmau as the Operations Chief. The Coast Guard was requested to respond with water and air assets along with the Barnstable County Dive Team. The Dennis Fire Department also responded to the scene with an Ambulance. On arrival of the Zodiac rescue boat Deputy Chief Varley, FF Herrmann, FF Ottino, Captain Kimball, and several other responding personnel launched the boat into the water. In the boat Captain Kimball, FF Herrmann, and FF Ottino set their site on two targets. The first target found was a buoy approximately 150 yards from shore and the second approximately 200 yards off shore well east of the original entry point was the female party who was found dressed in shorts and a tank top, motionless, and barely able to speak. The members quickly pulled the female into the boat and proceeded to shore where she was moved from the beach by Dennis and Brewster Fire personnel into a waiting Dennis Ambulance.
The female student and the two staff members were transported to Cape Cod Hospital for evaluation after which they were released. All members of the Brewster Fire Department performed this rescue under extremely hazardous conditions including freezing water temperatures and limited lighting. It is these type of professional and courageous actions that our personnel provide on a daily basis that often go undetected.