A posthumous award for life-saving was presented by the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office this week to the family of a man who died this year rescuing a woman and her five-year-old daughter from the San Joaquin River.

Family members of 41-year-old Eddie Gerardo “Topollo” Cervantes Lora on Tuesday received the prestigious award on his behalf. It was the first time it was given to a civilian, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

On Oct. 10, the vehicle of a mother with her child veered off the road and ended up submerged in the San Joaquin River. The crash took place near Cervantes Lora’s home, and deputies said that he helped rescue the mother and child without hesitation.

“After successfully rescuing the young girl, Topollo heroically re-entered the water in search of the woman, making the ultimate sacrifice in his act of valor,” the Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.

A spokesperson for the Sheriff’s Office said Cervantes Lora helped get the woman to shore, but she ultimately died.

Cervantes Lora left behind his three children ages 17, 16, and 4, as well as his wife. A GoFundMe account in his memory raised more than $77,000.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *