Roger Woodward

Roger Woodward

Survivor of Niagara Falls
Country: USA

  1. The Survivor of Niagara Falls
  2. A Fateful Day
  3. A Miraculous Survival
  4. The Lucky One
  5. A Life After the Fall
  6. A Proud Father

The Survivor of Niagara Falls

Roger Woodward – an American who, over six decades ago, at the age of 7, survived a fall into Niagara Falls. Despite Niagara Falls not being the tallest waterfall in the world, it is still recognized as the fastest. The waters cascade down so swiftly that it is almost impossible to believe that someone caught in its grip could survive. Especially a young seven-year-old boy. However, this is exactly what happened to Roger Woodward in the distant year of 1960. With him in the water was another boy, his friend James Honeycutt, who, unfortunately, was less fortunate than Roger.

Roger Woodward

A Fateful Day

In July of 1960, a family friend took the children to Niagara River. This spot was well-known to the locals who often spent their weekends here. When seven-year-old Roger, his seventeen-year-old sister Deanne, and their friend James took a boat ride, no one could have predicted the outcome. At some point, the children lost control of the boat, and all three found themselves in the river, rapidly being swept towards the waterfall. Deanne was the luckiest of all – the adults managed to pull her to safety, preventing her from getting closer to the roaring column of water. However, the boys, James and Roger, were carried away by the current towards Niagara Falls.

A Miraculous Survival

Few believed anyone would see the boys alive again. Sharp rocks awaited them at the base of the waterfall, and it was on these rocks that James landed... It is unknown by what miracle, but Roger Woodward survived. The newspapers of that time were filled with black and white photographs: here was the blue-eyed boy clinging to a life ring, and here he was on board a rescue boat. In other pictures, Roger was shown in the hospital, where he was treated for a minor concussion, along with a few scrapes and bruises.

The Lucky One

Roger was dubbed the lucky one, the chosen one of God, the youngest person in the world to survive a descent down Niagara Falls. However, his parents did not want to partake in the general frenzy. One evening, his father hitched a trailer to their family car, and the Woodwards left those places forever. For over 30 years, they never spoke about what happened on the river that day, July 9, 1960. Roger never even mentioned it to his sister. Only later did he stop avoiding reality, and they finally talked about it. In 2010, Roger Woodward spoke on the radio on the day that marked 50 years since his fall into Niagara. "I still smell the water when I tell this story," Roger said.

A Life After the Fall

Some might think that after such an experience, the boy would never approach water again or get in a boat. On the contrary, Roger grew up to become a diver and later served in the military during the Vietnam War. However, he was never a daredevil and never played hide and seek with death. Much later, as an adult, he found faith in God and admitted that perhaps his rescue back then was not just a lucky coincidence.

A Proud Father

Roger later had three sons, and they proudly invited their father to school to repeatedly share the story of his incredible plunge into Niagara Falls with their classmates.