Four Marin surfers saved two swimmers caught in high surf and a riptide at Rodeo Beach last Friday afternoon. The dramatic rescue began when the four boys, all high school students, noticed two people beyond the surf line waving their arms and yelling for help. Luckily, the boys are water polo players and members of the Stinson Beach Junior Lifeguard Program, and they knew what to do.
Wes Porter, a senior at Redwood High School, and Jack Richardson, a junior at Sir Francis Drake High School, had just finished surfing for the day and were on the beach when they saw the swimmers. They immediately phoned 911.
Two surfers in the water, Colby Paine, a senior at Saint Ignatius College Preparatory, and Ray Holmberg, a junior at Drake High School, paddled swiftly toward the pair in distress.
“The swimmers appeared to be frightened and out of breath,” said Paine.
The surfers reached the swimmers and had them hold on to the surfboards and catch their breath. In the meantime, the boys formulated a plan to get them through the strong surf and back to the beach.
They decided to wait for a lull in the waves and paddle their surfboards while the swimmers held onto their ankles and swam at the same time. It worked and the boys delivered the swimmers safely to the beach. This wasn’t a simple feat, considering the size of the surf and rough ocean conditions, according to the Marin County Fire Department.
“Without a doubt, these guys should be commended for their heroic efforts today,” said Rick Racich, a Marin County Fire Department engineer.
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