A 12-year-old boy who was pulled from the surf in a dramatic
rescue at a beach on Napier's Marine Parade says he thought
he was going to die when a wave caught him and dragged him
into the water.
Joshua McQuoid was splashing in the surf with a friend about
5pm yesterday when they were pulled into the water.
His friend was able to make it back to the beach, but Joshua
was swept away.
"The waves smashed me so much and there were five really big
ones - they flipped me around quite a few times," he told One
He was dragged along the beach 150m.
German tourist Julian Mantoan swam out to the youngster and
was able to bring him close to the shore where he was helped
by police and others forming a human chain to pull them to
Joshua thanked his rescuers.
"They saved my life, if it wasn't for them, I'd be dead."
Mr Mantoan said he jumped into the water when he realised
Joshua was in trouble.
"I saw this guy in the water and all his friends were
shouting out - they were too young to help."
As he was supporting Joshua the first police units were
quickly on the scene and officers ditched their boots and
vests and dashed into the water to help the pair in.
Police praised the rescuers' "heroism" as Joshua was brought
to shore "unresponsive and physically spent".
After being comforted by people on the beach Joshua was able
to get up and walk to the waiting ambulance.
Joshua was discharged from hospital last night.