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Thursday, Jul 16, 2015

Christian Surfers Save Mother and 2 Sons From New Zealand's Lethal Rip Tide on Christmas Day

  • (Photo: Wikimedia Commons
    The North Shore in Auckland, New Zealand.
By Samuel Smith , CP Reporter
January 2, 2015|9:41 am

A group of Christian surfers in New Zealand saved a mother and her two sons from drowning on Christmas Day after the family was caught in a near-lethal rip tip tide off the shore of a beach an hour west of Auckland.

The five surfers, who are all members of a local Christian surf club called the North Shore Christian Surfers Group, saved the mother and her two teenage sons who were allegedly close to drowning when the surfers rescued them, The New Zealand Herald reported Thursday.

The surfers, Darren Celliers, Caleb Lemkus, Olly Mason, Lewis Mennie and Troy Duckworth, arrived at Bethells Beach around 6:30 p.m. last Thursday when they were quickly told by a beachgoer of the swimmers in distress.

The five guys, who were all mostly in the 20s except for one who is 16 years old, swam out about 30 meters beyond where the waves were breaking off the shore in just enough time to keep the mother and her sons from dying. The group lifted the three swimmers up onto the surfboards and used all five boards to keep them afloat as they guided them back to the shore.

Celliers explained that when they reached the family, the family was clearly worried that they were going to drown.

"They were pretty exhausted and pretty far out, and weren't making any progress towards land," Celliers said. "It was pretty freaky."

Celliers further explained that the youngest son, who is 13, told the surfers that "If you guys hadn't come, I would have died out there."

"The younger brother was just freaking out. He was scared and in shock," Celliers added. "We spent the first few minutes trying to calm him down and explain that he was going to be all right."

Although the family is local to the region, Celliers assumes that the family underestimated the power of the west coast current.

"Even being an experienced surfer, I wouldn't just go swimming out on the west coast without flotation," Celliers asserted. "It's freaking dangerous."

The New Zealand Herald report added that there have been five different fatal incidents just in the last week that were caused by the west coast's vicious tide, so the likelihood of the family drowning would have been great if not for the five surfers.

On Saturday, a 16-year-old was swept to sea on Ninety Mile Beach. The day after Christmas, a 47-year-old died just off shore 43 miles southwest of Auckland while using his new surfboard that he received for Christmas.

Source URL : http://www.christianpost.com/news/christian-surfers-save-mother-and-2-sons-from-new-zealands-lethal-rip-tide-on-christmas-day-131956/