Teen boy, dog rescued after falling down embankment near Vermilion River

VERMILION, Ohio - A teen and his dog were rescued from freezing temperatures near the Vermilion River this weekend.

Vinny Ragnoni, 17, and his dog Mia went through quite an ordeal Friday afternoon. Mia ran toward the Vermilion River, slipped and fell 40 feet down an embankment. While trying to rescue Mia, Vinny slipped and found himself also trapped at the bottom of the slippery hill.

"I grabbed a branch and it broke. I slid another 45 feet," Vinny explained.

Chief William Rennie, with the Florence Township Fire Department, was among the first at the scene. He, along with two dozen other firefighters and a park ranger, used a rope and harness to bring Vinny and Mia back to higher ground.

Vinny's mom was concerned about her son's condition because he ran out of the house wearing only a T-shirt and shorts. The rescue lasted 90 minutes.

"I went to the hospital with Vinny. He had some hypothermia on his legs and fingers. He was released Friday night around 8:30," his mom said.

When it was all over, Chief Rennie explained how lucky both were to be found and be alive.

"He could have got trapped there and if nobody knew he was there, it could have been a long time.."

Vinny said, "Who knows what would have happened if they didn't get down as fast as they did and helped me out. Thank you."

Friday's cliff rescue was the second one this year for the department. Two teenagers were rescued in April just a short distance up river.

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