Oh deer! Watch as boaters save fawn from waters in Washington

Drew McWhirter and his family help save a deer struggling to swim in Saratoga Passage off Camano Island (Photo: Drew McWhirter)

CAMANO ISLAND, Wash. -- A small deer who frantically jumped into the waters off Camano Island's Blomquist Beach and nearly drowned Sunday afternoon was rescued by a family who had watched the ordeal unfold.

"We were sitting out on the deck of the beach house and the baby deer came by all frantic, stopped for a moment, then jumped off the bulkhead into the water," says Drew McWhirter. "We watched it for about 5 minutes and it was going to drown, head was going under."

He says the deer was heading across Saratoga Passage towards Whidbey Island but was too small to make it and seemed confused.

"So, we launched the boat," he said, joined by his brother Scott and his father Jim, who drove the boat.

Video shows the small deer bobbing in the wavy waters as they approached in the boat. Then Scott was able to grab the deer and bring it into the boat.

"(The fawn) was calm in the boat," McWhirter said.

Once back on shore, they brought the deer up a hill to a safe meadow to release her back into the wild. After a few moments, the deer popped up and scampered off, seemingly uninjured.