Local lifesavers praised for great strength and courage in the face of adversity

The bravery and swift actions of surf lifesavers and lifeguards across the 2017-2018 summer have been recognised at Parliament House in Canberra, where they were presented with Surf Life Saving Australia’s National Rescue of the Month award for dramatic surf rescues.

Surf lifesavers from Sunshine Beach SLSC, Sunshine Coast Life Guard Service, Bundaberg SLSC, Broulee SLSC, Moruya SLSC and Batemans Bay SLSC were acknowledged for their ongoing dedication to keeping Australia’s beaches and communities safe.

Above: The boys from Broulee Moruya and Batemans Bay with Co-Chairs of parliamentary Friends of Surf Life Saving Sarah Henderson MP and The Hon Matt Thistlewaithe: Photo source

The ceremony was attended by Co-Chairs of parliamentary Friends of Surf Life Saving Sarah Henderson MP, Federal Member for Corangamite and The Hon Matt Thistlewaithe MP, Federal Member for Kingsford Smith, with the awards being presented by a host of key Federal Members including Mr Llew O’Brien MP, Federal Member for Wide Bay, Hon Keith Pit MP, Federal Member for Hinkler, and Ann Sudmalis MP, Federal Member for Gilmore .

SLSA President Mr. Graham Ford AM said that “the National ’s ‘Rescue of the Month’ pays tribute to the remarkable acts of bravery in saving lives by our volunteer surf lifesavers and lifeguards”

“We are so proud to hear these stories and celebrate the actions of all of our surf lifesavers and lifeguards here today. They play a vital role on our beaches and it is great being able to acknowledge that.”

“It was a busy summer for all of our Surf Life Saving Clubs, keeping the public safe, and today is an opportunity to give thanks to just a few that make this happen right across the country,” said Mr. Ford. Broulee SLSC, Moruya SLSC, and Batemans Bay SLSC – Michael Weyman, Shaun Pike, Andrew Edmunds, Anthony Bellette, Ken Bellette, Mick Bellette, Ben Ralston On Saturday 24 March, a vessel holding six people capsized while trying to negotiate the Moruya River bar. The Far South Coast Support Operations team and Moruya SLSC were called out by SurfCom to assist.Upon their arrival, commercial fishing boats had already pulled two people out of the water, a third person was assisted onto a fishing boat while an IRB crew rescued two additional people. A person with leg injuries was transported to shore by a jet ski manned by Andrew Edmunds, while Shaun Pike and Michael Weyman waited with the overturned boat and continued to search for a missing person. Lifesaving reinforcements of Ken and Mick Bellette and Ben Ralston arrived to assist the search. The missing person was located by the lifesavers and CPR treatment was administered while the IRB raced to shore where she was handed to the care of paramedics. Unfortunately, on this occasion, not all people made it home safely, and one young girl lost her life. The lifesavers involved showed great strength and courage in the face of adversity, had they not been present this situation could have become even more devastating. *** This article first appeared on the SLS website and is republished in part

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