Most Heroic Person

Albert Ybarra

One afternoon last September, a minivan packed with children slammed into a concrete barrier near the toll booth on the San Mateo Bridge. Two boys aged three and four were tossed from the vehicle and into the chilly water below. When 33-year-old motorist Albert Ybarra came upon the wreckage, a group of shocked onlookers had formed at the bridge's edge. They gasped at the flailing bodies, including one man who'd already jumped in to save the boys but was nearly drowning. Ybarra, a Dublin resident, kicked off his shoes, threw off his glasses, and made the fifteen-foot plunge. According to the CHP, Ybarra managed to snatch the three-year-old and calm the other would-be rescuer. An alert tow-truck driver lowered a cable and hoisted the group to safety. Sadly, the four-year-old was never found. "I just had to do something," Ybarra told the Dublin City Council when they honored him in February. Mr. Ybarra, we're glad you did.

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