NSRI Awards for remarkable rescues and long service

NSRI volunteer crew members, the SA Navy and a Grade 8 Knysna pupil are among those receiving awards for remarkable rescues at the NSRI’s annual award ceremony at Camps Bay this evening.

This year two of the highest awards given by NSRI are being made to volunteer Sea Rescue crews from Port Elizabeth (Gallantry Bronze) and Bakoven (Gallantry Silver). Awards will also be presented for long service  by volunteer crew members .

The full list of awards being presented are:

* The Gallantry Silver Award to Johnny Albert, Jeremy Joseph Godfrey  and Alex Ryan Albert of Bakoven Station 2 for the rescue of 18 year-old Shane Keenan. Keenan was entangled in his kite lines and being swept towards rocks off Glen Beach, Camps Bay, by a huge ground swell and a 50 knot South Easter on 19 January  this year.

* The Bronze Gallantry Award to Stephen Van Den Berg (Station 6 and  Daniel Heiman (previously Station 6) for going to the rescue of surf skier Clinton Hempel. Onn 1 November 2014 at Sardinia Bay, Clinton had paddled with friends from Summerstrand to Sardinia Bay.  Conditions deteriorated during the paddle and he fell off his surf ski near to ‘take out’ beach.  Separated from the group and unable to remount his surf ski he became seriously hypothermic.  Although he managed to hold onto the ski he was unable to help himself.

* The Chairman’s Letter Of Appreciation  to the SAS Isandlwana Captain and crew for rescue of 6 crew on yacht Bille. On 7 January 2014, SAS Isandlwana responded to the stricken Angolan yacht Bille taking part in the Cape to Rio Yacht race about 100 miles NW of Saldanha Bay.  Using a small inflatable the SAS Isandlwana’s crew went to the rescue of the crew members of the stricken dismasted yacht. The seventh crew member of the yacht died when the yacht was dismasted in the storm prior to the arrival of the rescue team.

* Waterwise Academy Recognition Award to Devon Dodd, a Grade 8 pupil at Oakhill School in Knysna. Dodd was surfing at Buffalo Bay on 27 April 27 when he noticed a swimmer in distress. He rescued the man whose name he never found out, using his surfboard as a floatation aid. This is the first time that this award is being made.

* Marmion Marsh Award to Billy Harker for starting a surfski paddlers fundraising project.  In 2006, following a long search by air and sea units in foul weather conditions, in fading light, the NSRI eventually found and saved the life of surfskier Casper Kruger. Race organiser Billy Harker approached the NSRI about the project. The concept is simple: a R25 per month debit order campaign marketed into the surf ski community and ring fenced to fund Sea Rescue boats around the country.

* Alric Simpson Award to Captain Kieron Cox for his quite remarkable contribution over the past 29 years to the training of NSRI crew. 

* Directors Thanks to Hendrik Josias Henn of Station 17 Hermanus on his standing down from the position of station commander of Station 17 on 14 April 2015 after 26½ years in the post  and for staying on as operational crew.

* Long Service Awards  20 Yrs to:  Laurent Eray of Station 14 Plettenberg Bay; Nazeem Abrahams of Station 16 Strandfontein; Gavin Fordham, Station 19 Richards Bay; Michael Saunders , Station 25 Hartbeespoort Dam; Geoff Harris,  Station 9 Gordons Bay;  Lynne Harris, Station 9 Gordons Bay.

* Long Service Awards 25 Yrs to: Dr. John Donald, Station 14 Plettenberg Bay; Andre Fraser, Station 15 Mossel Bay; Marion Spencer,  Station 17 Hermanus;

* Long Service Awards 30 Yrs to David Robins, Hq Director And Station 3 Table Bay.

* Long Service Awards 35 Yrs to: Roger Clancy,  Station 12 Knysna;  Phil Ress, Station 3 Table Bay; Michael Clark  Station 17 Hermanus

* Long Service Awards 40 Yrs to Brad Geyser  Hq, Stn 2 Bakoven & Station 8 Hout Bay; Rob Stirrat  Hq And Stn 3 Table Bay; Ian Wienburg  Hq And Stn 3 Table Bay; Long Service Awards  45 Yrs; Ian Strachan  Hq, Stn 9 Gordons Bay.

* Most Improved Station Award to Station 20 Shelly Beach.

* Best Rib Station Award to Station 2 Bakoven.

* Best Class 1 Station Award (Pat O Sullivan) to Station 10 Simon’s Town.

(edited)

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