A kayaker who fought off a Great White Shark that mauled a 13-year-old boy on a beach in California, USA, has been awarded a medal of honor.
The incident happened on September 29, 2018, where Andrew Helbe, a California State Peace Officer, was kayaking off the coast of Encinitas when he heard Keane Webre-Hayes shout that he got bit.
Officer Helbe swam right towards the boy to help him out when he got bit by an 11-foot aggressive shark.
While his friend paddled their kayak over, Officer Helbe protected the boy from the massive shark, which was roaming around them.
Helbe and Keane Webre-Hayes were alone in the sea with a lot of blood, which just drove the shark into a frenzy.
Eventually, they both got aboard the kayak and Officer Helbe’s EMT training helped him out in controlling the blood that was pouring out from Keane Webre-Hayes.
His quick actions prevented him from going into a shock, which played a huge role in saving his life.
The two were then met by lifeguards on the beach and a medical transport arrived on the scene on time.
Keane Webre-Hayes was brought to the Rady’s Children’s Hospital to recover.
He sustained injuries on his face, neck, shoulders and back.
Fast forward to January 5, 2022, Officer Helbe’s bravery was recognized by the Governor’s Office in the form of a Medal of Valour.
In a statement that was released by the California Governor’s Office, they said:
“With no regard for his own safety or life, Officer Helble went above and beyond the call of duty and the state of California takes great pride in presenting the Silver Medal of Valor to Department of Parks and Recreation State Park Peace Officer Andrew Helble.”
Ellie Hayes, the mother of Keane Webre-Hayes, thanked the officer for saving the life of her son.
In a statement that she released, Ellie said:
“It absolutely required courage for them to respond to this call and my son’s call for help and not swim away to save their own lives. And with the shark still in the area, they risked their lives to save my son. I’ll be forever grateful.”
What are your thoughts on the brave acts of Officer Helbe? Let us know what you think about it by leaving a comment in the comments section below!