WAYNE, NJ – Kathleen Engler looked out her window onto Packanack Lake on Wednesday morning and was surprised to see her neighbor Anita Cronk in her car, forty feet out into the lake.

“She was speaking frantically to her daughter on the shore and nobody was helping this woman in the car,” said Engler. “I couldn’t believe it and that’s why I went out.”

Engler told her daughter to call 911 and raced out to her dock where her small boat was moored. She quickly untied it and motored out to the car which was still slowly drifting in the lake.   

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The helpful neighbor pulled alongside and helped Cronk climb through the car window.  “I had her feet in the boat, sitting on the edge of the car window before the Wayne Fire Department got there,” said Engler. “They were able to hold the boat so that she felt steady enough to get all the way into the boat.”

From there the fire department towed the boat back to shore and went back to tow the car back as well.

Engler is a social studies teacher at Schuyler-Colfax Middle School. Today she made her students and the Township of Wayne proud with her quick thinking and fast action.