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Woman In Wheelchair Rolls Off Cruise Ship Dock Rescued By Two Locals

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A Carnival Cruise passenger confined to her wheelchair fell off a dock in St. Thomas and began sinking when she was rescued by two local men. 

DJ Kashief Hamilton says he was playing music on a cruise ship dock in the US Virgin Islands when he heard a loud scream. The DJ stopped the music and ran to investigate. He says he saw other people running, including his friend Randolph Donovan, who works as an entertainer for visitors to the island.

The 34-year-old Donovan jumped 10 feet down off the dock into the ocean. where a young woman in a wheelchair was sinking.
“I got her out of her wheelchair,” Donovan told CNN. Someone on the dock threw down a life preserver, he said.

The heart-stopping video shows Donovan in the water with the girl, lifting her head above water while a life preserver is placed around her. Hamilton  also jumped into the water to secure a rope around both the girl and Donovan while emergency crew helped to pull them up out of the water, according to the Virgin Islands Consortium.

In other footage recorded at the scene, the girl can be seen safely on the dock while Donovan tries to catch his breath from the rescue. A woman then immediately runs up to him and gives him a hug and says thank you. 

A large crowd of people also erupted in cheers as two people, identified as the girl’s family members, tearfully thank Donovan for his heroic efforts. 

Kurt Vialet, the senator for the 31st and 32nd Legislature of the Virgin Islands, hailed the men as heroes both on Facebook and on the Virgin Islands’ Senate floor.

"Everyday heroes with unassuming personalities live among us! I'm sure the family will be forever grateful. "

Commissioner Joseph Boschulte of the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism also commended both men on their brave efforts.

"I want to thank and acknowledge two members of our Visitor Experience team at the Department of Tourism - Kashief Hamilton and Randolph Donovan, Jr. - who went above the call of duty yesterday to save a disabled Carnival Fascination passenger from drowning at The West Indian Company (WICO) dock. We're proud of you - well done!"

Carnival Cruise medical staff examined the girl who did not sustain any injuries in the incident. The cruise line also provided her with a replacement wheelchair for the remainder of the cruise. 

Kashief Hamilton and Randolph Donovan (Photo: Joseph Boschulte - Facebook)

"I couldn’t think, I just had to move real quick. I cannot stop thinking about the way she was looking. I told myself I had to save her. The water was deep and when I saw the wheelchair going under, the weight and the fight that she put on me, I was in a tight situation. I keep screaming saying I cannot hold on any more. Thanks to Dj Country, he was right there in the water to help, now she has another day to talk about this day."

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