Father and son thank mystery fisherman credited with saving boy’s life

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COSSAYUNA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A Washington County father and son are finally able to thank the mystery fisherman who is credited with saving the boy’s life.

When we first met Jason Spear and his 10-year-old son Bryce Niles in early May, they told NEWS10’s Anya Tucker how much they wanted to thank an angler who had rescued Bryce when a kayak he was paddling in capsized on Cossayuna Lake.

He and the friend he had been visiting in the lake community were not wearing life vests and neither knows how to swim.

It was early May and the water was still very cold.

The fisherman, who was one of only a few people on the lake, heard the boy’s cries for help and sped over.

After grabbing Bryce out of the water, he then transported him to first responders who had been called in to help. The fisherman then motored off before anyone could catch his name.

During a May 4 interview, Jason and Bryce said how much they wished to thank the stranger for his quick-thinking actions that likely saved Bryce’s life. But the man remained a mystery — until now.

Anya: “So you and Bryce met him?”
Jason: “Yes. We were able to meet this man and shake his hand. And it’s total goosebumps.”

Jason says it was a painted Thank You sign that Bryce posted near the Cossayuna Lake boat launch that got the ball rolling. A friend who knew the identity of the mystery fisherman helped set up a meeting.

Anya: “And what did you say to him?”
Bryce: “I got to say Thank You.”
Anya: “Are you glad you got to do that in person?”
Bryce nodded yes.

Jason says the man is a local pastor, who is humble and wishes to remain anonymous.

Jason: “He had other plans that he was going to do that day. Ultimately, he came to this boat launch and went in the water.”

Bryce: “What he said to me was, ‘God has a plan for you.’”

What that plan for Bryce is will be revealed in good time. But in the meantime, they have plans for Bryce to learn how to swim this summer.

A summer that he may not have been around to enjoy had it not been for a fisherman who was in the right place at the right time.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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