When 12-year-old Charles "Dale" Ostrander began to drown in a riptide off the coast of Washington state, the first person to come to his rescue was Nicole Kissel, only twelve years old herself.

According to CBS, Kissel heard Ostrander cry for help and turned her boogie board around to reach him, over her father's objections that it was too dangerous. She was able to help Ostrander onto the board, but they remained caught in the tide. Kissel says Ostrander already looked in dire straits: "His skin was a lot lighter. It looked like there was no life in his body at all."

Eventually, Ostrander was knocked off the boogie board. Rescue workers recovered his body, which appeared dead. But after CPR, he revived, and although he's still in the hospital, he's now able to speak. Ostrander was deprived of oxygen for a long time, and may not make a complete recovery. But every second that he was on the boogie board with Kissel was a second when he could draw breath, and hopefully reduce his chances of permanent brain damage. Kissel has visited Ostrander in the hospital, where he reportedly told her, "Thank you." I'd like to add my thanks to Kissel for giving us a piece of good news in an awful week, and being a brave, awesome kid.

Miracle Surf Rescue: Girl, 12, Was First To Help [CBS]