01 March 2005

Two boys save woman from sea

When it comes to bravery, you can't teach two young Melkbosstrand boys anything!

The two, 11-year-old Luke Swanevelder and the 12-year-old Jannus Visser, both Grade 6 pupils at Laerskool Van Riebeeck Strand, rescued a woman from the sea at Melkbosstrand on Sunday.

The pair were bodyboarding about 14:00 when they heard cries for help from 33-year-old Priscilla Peters of Atlantis above the roar of the waves.

Luke said: "At first, we thought it was only someone swimming around, but after a little while we saw her waving at us. We swam in a little deeper to try to help her."

Jannus said they didn't think twice.

"Others would have done the same for us," he said. "We don't want to brag."

Jannus remained in the sea with Priscilla, while Luke swam out to the beach to call for help.

The woman was very, very tired
The two told how they managed to get Priscilla out of the water by getting her to hold on to their bodyboards.

Jannus said members of the National Sea Rescue Institute were already on the beach.

"The woman was very, very tired and just cried," he said.

Craig Lambinon of the NSRI confirmed Priscilla was already safely on the beach when they arrived.

He said she had swum out too far and was struggling to swim back when the two boys spotted her and went to the rescue.

Despite their heroic act, the boys have no plans to become lifesavers.

Jannus said: "I like snakes and would like to have my own snake park one day."

Luke said: "No, I want to be a rugby player. Can we go now? I'm looking for bigger waves."


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