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Cornelius plans to honor teen who pulled boy from river

Although he didn't save toddler from drowning, city officials say Rodolfo Ferreira is a hero

Cornelius officials are considering how best to honor the Cornelius teen who pulled a boy out of the Tualatin River at Steamboat Park last week.

Rodolfo Ferreira, a senior at Forest Grove High School, pulled four-year-old Jorge Luis Garfia from the Tualatin River after the young boy slipped into the water shortly after 4 p.m. on Tuesday, March 25.

Police arrived almost immediately after Ferreira brought Jorge out of the water. The youngster was transported by LifeFlight helicopter to Legacy Emmanuel Hospital in Portland.

Jorge, whose family lives near the Cornelius park, was pronounced dead at the hospital at 5:24 p.m.

Even though Ferreira's attempt didn't save Jorge's life, his effort was Herculean, said Cornelius City Manager Dave Waffle, who is working with public safety officials to come up with an appropriate honor.

'The attempt was heroic,' Waffle said, 'and deserves to be recognized.'

Cornelius Police Chief Paul Rubenstein wrote in a press release that officers are still investigating the death, and haven't yet determined the cause.

'But at this point in time,' Rubenstein wrote, 'this appears to be a tragic accidental death.'