Melissa Lehmberg and Chuck Hunter found the fawn stuck in the side of the bridge, its body wedged between the planks that supported the structure’s handrails.
The water was receding on Daufuskie Island on Monday, after Tropical Storm Irma had flooded the area earlier that day.
The pair didn’t know how long the spotted fawn had been there. They just knew it was trapped, its head and the top half of its body hanging off the bridge, leaning toward the marsh below.
Hunter, according to Lehmberg, used a hammer to knock apart the planks. The deer fell into the water, and they thought it would run off. Instead, it wormed its way under the bridge.
They decided to wait a couple hours to see what happened but after that time passed, the fawn hadn’t moved.
Lehmberg crawled under the bridge and dug her hands into the muck to get at it. Finally, she was able to scoop it in her arms and carry it to dry land. She cradled it like a baby and transported it to Melissa Davis, who looks after animals on the island.
Davis took the fawn in and discovered it must have been weening — it didn’t drink milk from a bottle but instead lapped it from a saucer.
“I think he’s got three names already,” Lehmberg said Friday morning.
She described her rescue effort as “getting friendly with the crabbies.”
Last year, Sea Pines caddie Trent Hoisington made headlines when he jumped into a lagoon on a golf course to save a drowning fawn. When asked if he was worried about alligators, Hoisington replied that he’d carried his pocket knife in with him.
Davis, reached Friday afternoon by phone, said the fawn was a male.
She named him Braxton the Buck.
And she said he likes to play with the 12 squirrels she rescued during the storm.