I would encourage you to check out the interviews with the father and his daughter from Waterloo, Illinois who were aboard the Duck Boat in Philadelphia this past week when a barge hit it. Two people were killed in the accident.
Kevin Grace and his daughter, Ruby, survived. Kevin barely had time to get a life preserver over his daughter's head before they were tossed into the water.
It sounded like a chaotic scene as the barge approached and the passengers and crew on the Duck Boat realized the two were going to collide. People went into the water and reports say most were rescued by other boats in the area. Kevin and Ruby managed to swim to a river wall and climb up a ladder to get out of the water.
Years ago when the Grace family moved to their home outside Waterloo they made sure Ruby took swim lessons. There's a small pond in front of their house. They believe that the fact Ruby was a strong swimmer may have saved her life.