These types of folks always restore my faith in humanity. Shavarsh Karapetyan, an Armenian Olympic swimmer, and his brother had just finished a 12-mile marathon when they witnessed a trolley bus plunge into a dam reservoir in 1976.
The trolley bus sank to a depth of 33 feet 80 feet offshore. Shavarsh dove in and swam to the bus, where he managed to kick in the back window despite the lack of visibility, injuring himself in the process. He then proceeded to save twenty individuals who had been stuck on the bus for hours, one by one.
The chilly water, along with his inquiries as a result of breaking the glass pane, resulted in his hospitalization for 45 days following the incident.
During this time, he contracted pneumonia, sepsis, and lung damage, which forced him to retire from sports.
His story went untold for years until he was named in a 1982 piece about the incident. He happened to be passing by a burning building in 1985 and raced inside, saving individuals trapped within one by one until he collapsed. With severe burns and lung damage, he was admitted to the hospital once more.
At the age of 66, he's still going strong.
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