Throughout the majority of the 1930s, an unassuming hero lounged on the docks of Swansea, Wales. But unlike many heroes in legend, television or comic books, this one had four legs and a thick coat of black hair.
Swansea Jack, as this brave dog came to be known, saved many from drowning in his seven years of life, which he spent in the River Tawe, North Dock area of Swansea. One day, just a year after the pup had been born, a 12-year-old boy panicked in a nearby river. Jack leaped into the water without a second thought and was able to pull the boy to safety, saving his life.
Though this endearing rescue seems to have gone unnoticed by the community, it wasn’t long before Jack had another chance to prove his mettle. A crowd watched in suspense as Jack quickly responded to cries of help from a swimmer in distress off the docks. When the rescue proved successful, Swansea Jack was given a spot in the local paper and awarded a silver collar for his good deed.
According to stories told throughout the area, Swansea Jack went on to save an incredible 25 more people from a watery death before he himself perished after eating rat poison. He still remains the only dog to have been given two bronze medals by the National Canine Defense League. A burial monument is located on Swansea’s promenade, dedicated to this lone canine hero.
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