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Police Officer Reunites with Boy He Saved from Drowning 12 Years Ago [Video]



Quick Smiles:

  • Lt. Walter Sweeney from the Anne Arundel County Police reunited with a 12-year-old boy, Matthew Henegar, whose life he saved back in 2011 when he was 14 months old.
  • A social media post by Matthew’s grandmother, who recognized Sweeney from a Facebook post, sparked the reunion.
  • Sweeney recalled the hot July day in 2011 when he gave Matthew CPR and chest compressions and was excited to see him again after all these years.

A police officer in Maryland recently reunited with a young boy whose life he saved in 2011.

Anne Arundel County police made the heartwarming reunion possible on Wednesday when they brought together a detective and a young boy whose life he saved more than a decade ago.

The detective in question is none other than Lt. Walter Sweeney, who saved Matthew Henegar’s life when he was just 14 months old.

It was a hot July day in 2011 when the infant nearly drowned after being pulled from a swimming pool on Evergreen Road in Severn.

But thanks to Sweeney’s quick thinking and CPR skills, the boy’s life was saved.


Fast forward to 2021, and the two were reunited after a social media post caught the attention of Matthew’s grandmother, Linda Henegar. She noticed Sweeney in a Facebook post announcing his recent promotion and realized he was the same person who saved her grandson’s life.

After reaching out to the police department, a reunion was arranged, and the memories came rushing back for both Sweeney and Matthew.

“It was exciting. A lot of emotion came back to how this happened, and that he was here and everything like that, it was very exciting,” said Sweeney.

For Matthew and his family, it was an opportunity to thank the man who played a pivotal role in their lives.

“It means everything. Without him, I wouldn’t have him,” said Matthew’s mother, Carolyn Henegar. “We talk about it all the time, how grateful we are. We will always be grateful.”

The reunion was an emotional moment for both Sweeney and Matthew, who hadn’t seen each other since posing for a picture together not long after the rescue.


“I think it’s great to meet the guy that saved my life after 12 years,” said Matthew.

The story is a testament to the power of social media and the enduring impact that acts of kindness can have. For Sweeney, it was a reminder of the good that can come from being a police officer.

“It’s something that we do every day, and sometimes you don’t know the impact that you’re going to have on somebody,” he said.

As for Matthew and his family, they’ll always have a special place in their hearts for the man who saved their son’s life.

“We’ll never forget him,” said Linda Henegar. “He’s part of our family now.”

It’s doubtful it will take another 11 or 12 years before the two will see each other again, as they’ve already made plans to stay in touch.


It’s a happy ending to a story that began with fear and uncertainty, but ultimately ended with gratitude and a newfound appreciation for the people who make a difference in our lives.

Source: WBAL