"I only acted as I had trained. I did not succeed because I woke up that morning thinking I would have to save lives. I succeeded because I had prepared everyday for 15 years in case I ever had to." -Paddy O'Cahan, Chusett Firefighter
Paddy O'Cahan was orphaned in Chusett as a baby; left at the foot of a fire station in the night in 1902. He was found by the then fire chief Connor O'Cahan, who adopted the baby with his wife, Mary, as their fourth child. Paddy was educated in public school, where he was often bullied for looking different than his parents. Shortly after, Paddy earned a reputation for fighting and received a suspension. During this time, Paddy was forced by his father to read one book a day during his time out of school. Paddy himself has attributed this time to have been the moment he understood the importance of education. After returning to school almost a month later, Paddy was again met with teasing. Instead of fighting, he chose to keep his head down and stay focused on his schoolwork. While walking home after a day of bullying, he crossed Caffrey Bridge and noticed a few classmates playing by the river. One boy fell in and was quickly swept by the river's strong fall current. As the boy screamed out that he couldn't swim, Paddy dove off the bridge ahead of him. Paddy swam the boy and himself to shore, saving his life. The boy's name was Karasu Kohei.