Quick action helps girl caught in Chappy current

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Max Sherman, shown here getting his sergeant badge pinned on by his wife Danielle, helped a young kayaker Sunday. It was Danielle who alerted him and jumped into action first.

On Sunday, Danielle Sherman and her husband, Tisbury Police Sgt. Max Sherman were heroes for a young girl stuck under the Dyke Bridge on Chappaquiddick.

The Shermans and their three children were heading home after a day at East Beach on Chappy when they spotted an overturned kayak in the water as they crossed the bridge.

“Usually kayaks aren’t just overturned; there’s usually people in them,” Max Sherman, who spoke to The Times by phone about the incident, said.

Danielle Sherman instinctively ran out of their car after seeing the kayak, and a man who was frantically searching around the bridge. She located a young girl holding onto the pilings underneath the bridge who was not able to swim to shore because of a strong current. The girl was with a man Sherman presumed to be the father.

“[Danielle] was on the top railing about to jump in,” Sherman said. He added that he was amazed, but not surprised that his wife was so ready to jump in the water despite only recently recovering from a broken neck a few months ago. “That’s who I’m married to. She’s a schoolteacher, and she’s just a selfless individual.”

Instead, Sherman went in the water, and assisted the girl, who told him she was “5 years old” and a “good swimmer.” Danielle then helped pull the girl up to safety. Aside from being stuck under the bridge, the girl and the man were OK.

“MY WIFE IS AMAZING!” Sherman wrote in part in a Facebook post about the event. “My wife was ready to jump in the water for unknown individuals in hopes to help. My wife who just over 8 months ago had a broken neck. She is amazing, and my kids have such a wonderful role model to look up to!”

While Sherman did not get the names or relationships of the individuals, he assumed it was a father-daughter duo that may not have been from the Island, and were unfamiliar with the currents.