Salute to Service Winner: West Allis firefighter Jeff Cavett

WTMJ Cares Salute to Service

For public safety professionals, the commitment to helping people in need doesn't end when they finish their work shift. Because of their unique skill-sets they often are called on to respond to dangerous situations away from their job, and in West Allis firefighter Jeff Cavett's case, while he was on vacation.

Cavett was on summer trip in Manistee, Michigan with his family and noticed a young boy fighting to stay above the waves just off the beach in Manistee. He quickly jumped into action, swimming underwater until he came upon the child, struggling to breathe. Lifting the boy above the water line, he walked him back into the shore.

More: Steve Scaffidi's Salute to Service - check out all the honorees

That wasn't the end of his excitement for the day. As he sat on the beach with his own children, he noticed two even younger kids struggling against the strong riptide that threatened to drag them into the lake. Again, he swam out, rescuing the young girl and her brother. 

He would go on to make another rescue that day, and in his own words, was thankful that he was a strong swimmer, and had the energy to save those people on that beach that day in Michigan.

He doesn't call himself a hero. "Giving every ounce of every thing you have left, and almost died doing it, is truly humbling," Cavett said.

For these incredible rescues and for risking his own life to save the lives of others, West Allis firefighter Jeff Cavett is today's WTMJ Cares Salute to Service Award winner. 

WTMJ Cares Salute to Service is sponsored by First Bank Financial Centre.

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