Chas Forte is a hero. Literally. The Huntington High School junior helped save the life of a 41 year old man who nearly drowned off Wincoma Point in Huntington Harbor.
Mr. Forte is a happy-go-lucky young man with a smile on his face during nearly every waking moment. But in the late afternoon on Sunday, August 26 the teenager encountered a very serious situation and he rose to the occasion and responded magnificently.
Working on a Town of Huntington pump-out boat with his partner, Patrick Brady, Mr. Forte was flagged down by the family of a man who was close to drowning. Messrs. Brady and Forte transferred the victim to their boat and headed toward land with Mr. Forte at the helm.
As they sped across the bay, Mr. Forte radioed the Huntington Bay constable to intercept their craft and transport the victim to a waiting ambulance at the town dock in Halesite.
The day had been going like any other on the water until Messrs. Forte and Brady were waved over. “So we pulled alongside them and they said they had a crewmember on board who swallowed salt water and was hyperventilating,” Mr. Forte said. “So we bought him on board our boat and started the transport to the Halesite town dock where Halesite’s ambulance was waiting.”
Known around Huntington High School and the community as Captain Chas for his love of the water, Mr. Forte plans to play on the Blue Devil varsity football, wrestling and lacrosse teams this year as well as the Northport-Huntington ice hockey team.
Mr. Forte is interested in studying business or engineering in college in preparation for a career in real estate development. His favorite Huntington teachers include Suzie Biagi, Paige Tyree Furman and Frederick Bisogno.
The teenager’s best friends include Aedan McDonald, Cole Pillion and Ryan Baker. “My cousin has loved the water and boats since we were young,” Mr. McDonald said. “He enjoys helping people and always does the right thing. He is the captain of the Halesite Fire Department’s junior firefighters program and enjoys it a lot. He tries to make the best of everything and is confident with all of his actions. I am very proud of him.”
Mr. Forte was honored at Huntington Town Hall by the Town Board prior to a recent public meeting. The teenager was presented with a special proclamation commemorating his exceptional service and efforts that helped save someone’s life.