Rescued child says 'Good Morning, America!'

ÊÊÊ   JOHNSON CITY -- At 5 a.m. on Tuesday morning, an ABC "Good Morning America" crew from Charlotte, N.C. arrived at Johnson City Medical Center (JCMC) to prepare lights and camera for plenty of action in the hospital administration conference room.
   A little after 7 a.m., two-year-old Johnson City resident Juliann Farmer, accompanied by her favorite stuffed dolphin, and her parents, Brandy and Eric, walked down the hall from her room in The Children's Hospital. She was on her way to greet her hero for the first time since he rescued her from the rapids of Holston River.
   David Bowery of Kingsport rescued the child from the swiftly flowing current of the river on Saturday, July 5. Bowery and his wife Catina were dining with friends at a seafood restaurant in Kingsport when the Bowerys spotted the child as she was being swept down the river past the restaurant. Juliann had fallen into the river at a residence upstream.
   Bowery jumped past his wife, who is a nurse at Indian Path Medical Center, ran around the corner of the restaurant and leaped into the water to begin swimming toward the child. Juliann's father said from what he could determine, his daughter had been in the water about two minutes. "They said two-five minutes, but it felt longer. Now that I look back on it, it was probably closer to two (minutes)," Farmer said.
   As Bowery swam out in the river, he witnessed a heartstopping sight.
   "I saw the back of her head and her hand," Bowery said, flinching a little as he chatted with reporters after the "Good Morning America" remote was completed. Bowery said he snatched the child, raised her up a little and swam toward the banks, where people had gathered. After those on the bank lifted the child from his arms, he had to stay in the shallow water for a reflective moment, he said.
   Since her rescue, Juliann has been in The Children's Hospital with pneumonia. However, she was released to go home after the television interview.
   Juliann's parents call Bowery not only a hero, but their daughter's angel.
   "I'm paid to rescue, climb trees and aid victims," said Eric Farmer, an EMT, "but people like David are the real heroes."
   Bowery and his wife, along with Juliann and her parents, were featured in a 10-minute segment of the Tuesday show. Elizabeth Plyler of Charlotte, producer for "Good Morning America," said ABC had spotted the story on the news wires.
   Plyler covers the Southeast region for "Good Morning America." In addition to visiting and filming at JCMC, the news crew, which also included an audio and a video technician, stopped by the police station to hear the 9-1-1 tape of the frantic phone call made by Catina Bowery from the riverfront restaurant, they visited the restaurant and they taped footage of the river and its banks.
   "I know somebody else was there that day," Bowery said. "There's a reason this little girl is here. It's not an accident that she's here."
   The ABC team pulled away from JCMC around 9 a.m., heading for Asheville, and later, back to Charlotte.
   A happy little girl in a yellow dress, toting a dolphin and waving, joined her grateful parents as they left JCMC with what surely is a new outlook on life.