Mother and 2 sons rescued from Mackinaw River

By WEEK Producer

June 9, 2014 Updated Jun 9, 2014 at 10:12 PM CDT

GREEN VALLEY, Ill. -- A mother and her two sons became stranded in the middle of the Mackinaw River around 3:30 p.m. near Mackinaw Valley Park in Green Valley.

The family was reportedly tubing on the river, when their inner tube flipped over. The mother and two children were forced to hang on to a tree.

Rescue crews quickly arrived to the scene, but didn't have a boat.

Two passersby who live in the area stopped and dropped their boat into the water, saving the family.

"It's not quite flood stage but it's pretty close right now,” said Jeff Saville, who was one of the people who saved the family. “The current is bad, it's washing trees off the far banks, which is where these people were. There's a big cottonwood tree just fallen in and the current shoved them up against it and overturned their great big inner tube with all three on it."

Saville, a 30-year resident of Mackinaw Valley Park, said the mother and two children were lucky they were able to hold on to a cottonwood tree until he and another rescuer could reach them.

They suffered some scratches and bruises but no serious injuries.