Oakland County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team Retrieves Man’s Prosthetic Leg
(OCSO, July 13, 2022)
Milford, MI – Brandon Smith was doing what many fathers might do on a lazy Sunday in July if they had the chance. He went for a float on a lake with his 6-year-old son.
But when son Christopher jumped off their raft in Sunrise Lake in Milford Township, what happened next was not something he might have expected. His father’s $80,000 prosthetic leg somehow became separated from its owner and plunged to the bottom of the lake, nearly 50 feet straight down.
“He tried but he just couldn’t get it,” said Brandon’s father-in-law, Tim McIntosh After 17 surgeries to repair a leg that was injured six years ago after Brandon had fallen from a tree while hunting, the prosthetic leg he had had for a month and provided him with mobility was gone.
Tim and wife Catherine contacted the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office and asked for help. Cue the Sheriff’s Dive Team. Sgt. Brian Burwell, who heads up the team, met with the family on Monday.
Using GPS coordinates the family provided as to the approximate location of the prosthesis, the team spent about 40 minutes and identified a location.
Today, after less than 10 minutes in the water, Deputy Justin Wiegand recovered the prosthesis – which was in surprisingly good shape – at a depth of 48 feet and returned it to the family. They were effusive in their praise for the Dive Team and the Sheriff’s Office.
“You guys came to the rescue,” Tim said. “They were so professional. They were so good. It was a wonderful experience.”
Brandon took the prosthesis with him to the hospital to have it checked out and to see if similar mishaps can be avoided in the future.
Sheriff Michael Bouchard was pleased by the positive outcome. “Our dive team does an amazing job in a variety of conditions and circumstances,” Bouchard said. “In this incident, they were able to make a big quality of life difference for this gentleman who obviously would be greatly negatively impacted by the loss of his prosthetic leg. I’m proud of their work every day and especially in this circumstance.
Learn more about the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office at https://www.oakgov.com/sheriff/Pages/default.aspx