UPS driver Bill McWha had just moved to Wakefield, Rhode Island, in 2010 when he decided to check out his town’s main river. From the banks of the Saugatucket River, McWha was horrified by what he saw: thousands of migrating river herring stuck at a dam, unable to swim over to reach their spawning sites.
So he took matters into his own hands. The next day, McWha returned to the river with a net, positioned himself on a 14-foot beam that had washed ashore during a flood, and started lifting 10 to 15 fish at a time over the Main Street Dam. Many passersby shook their heads, but others were curious. After he explained that he was helping a fish species reproduce, about a dozen of them joined his cause.