CNN's Chris Cuomo saved a man from drowning in a strong rip current Sunday while vacationing in the Hamptons, the New York Post reports, and Cuomo discussed the story Tuesday after his New Day co-anchors made a point of congratulating him on his heroics:
The "New Day" anchor and brother of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo spotted the older man being carried out in the Peconic River near Shelter Island hot spot Sunset Beach on Sunday afternoon.
Cuomo, 45, who was at anchor on his fishing boat with his editor wife Cristina Cuomo and their children, saw the unnamed stricken man was in distress and threw him a life preserver before jumping in and swimming after him.
Frank Cilione, the managing partner of Philippe East Hampton who had moored up with Cuomo and his family, said, "Chris saved this man’s life. We saw him floating by in what looked like a very strong, fast current, and Chris began yelling at the man to swim out of it at an angle. But the man said he couldn’t move his arms, all his energy was spent, and he carried on floating away, his head barely above the water.
"Chris threw him a life preserver, but the man still didn’t start swimming, so Chris jumped in the water and went after him. It was happening too fast to untie the boat and start the engine. At this point, the man was 500 to 600 feet away from us, almost so far that you couldn’t see him, but Chris is a strong guy and swam up to him."
"The weird part is my wife threw me in after him," Cuomo joked Tuesday. "In truth, I was leaving it alone, because I didn't want to reveal the guy. It was fast-moving water, a lot of boaters were anchored and he went for a swim and didn't judge the current right … He didn't look right and he said, ‘I'm not doing well.' I threw him the life preserver. It wasn't enough, so I didn't think. I just went in and got him, and it was hard for us to swim across but we eventually did."
Cuomo recommended people think before jumping in fast-moving water.
"I didn't think the guy was going to make it," he said. "He didn't look good … We're only talking about it because somebody called and put it in the paper."