Teens owe lives to accidental hero
GEOFFREY MUIR doesn't like to be called a hero.
But if he hadn't been at North Wall, Ballina, on Monday afternoon two teenagers might not be alive today.
“I was walking along Lighthouse Beach about 5.30pm and I noticed a couple swimming,” he said.
“Then I suddenly realised they were in trouble.”
Mr Muir jumped on his bicycle and raced to the end of the wall, where there was an Angel Ring floatation device.
The ring was installed in January last year after a two-year battle by McLeans Ridges rock fisherman, Neil Adams.
After grabbing the Angel Ring, Mr Muir scaled down the rocks on the side of the wall, almost to the water level.
“I didn't think I would be able to throw it far enough from the top,” he said.
“I threw it and saw the young bloke grab it, but then I got hammered by waves.
“I went under water for a fair while. I was hanging on to those rocks for dear life.”
When Mr Muir finally escaped the water and climbed back up, the two youngsters were safely on the wall.
“I have to give credit to the young fella – he never let go of the girl the whole time. He's the hero,” he said.
“They came up to me afterwards and shook my hand.
"A woman called an ambulance because they had blood everywhere.
"The emergency services got there really quickly.
“I got a bit of bark taken off me, too, but I'm fine.”
Mr Muir credits the Angel Ring for saving the two teens.
“Having that Angel Ring there is a great thing,” he said.
“I was so bloody grateful.
“I don't know what I would have done if it wasn't there.”
Mr Adams said he was pleased to see the rings were saving lives.
“I believe that's about the 20th rescue this year in NSW using an Angel Ring,” he said.
“It is good to see that someone knew how to use it.
"They certainly do save lives.
“It's a successful program.”