Humble hero steps forward

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A HUMBLE hero who rescued a seven-year-old girl at sea but then shied away from the praise lauded upon him by the grateful family has come forward.

As reported in last week’s Standard, holidaymaker Duncan Clarke was immensely grateful for the bravery shown by an anonymous beach-goer who stepped in to rescue his daughter Erin when she got in trouble off Skegness beach recently.

The young girl’s rescuer has now revealed himself to be aspiring Coastguard Gary Hume, who had initially been somewhat overwhelmed by the family’s adulation as he felt there had been nothing remarkable about his actions to deserve such praise.

He said: “I’m quite a shy person so I was a little shocked by their response.

“At the time I was proud of what I had done but it was not until I read the paper that I realised what it meant to the family - for him to go to that trouble made me wish I had spent a little more time talking to them or had given him my phone number instead of rushing off.”

Coincidentally, Gary had only just returned from volunteering to be a Coastguard when he made the daring rescue and has previously worked as a lifeguard.

He said: “It was a real coincidence that I was down there - I knew she was too far out and by the time I got out to her I could barely touch the bottom, so if she had fallen in, regardless of whether or not she was a good swimmer she would have been in real trouble.”

Now Gary has had a chance to reflect upon his actions and the family’s reaction to him, he wishes he had been less dismissive of their praise and had stayed in touch.

If you know the holidaymakers in question call the Standard on 01754 897120 and we will put them in touch.