A Bundaberg police officer has been recognised for his bravery after an incident at Elliott Heads beach saw him involved in the rescue of two swimmers.
On the afternoon of 18 October 2016, Senior Constable Mick Gray, who was off duty at the time, and his partner Sherylea Jones witnessed two distressed swimmers about 100 metres from shore.
Realising they were in difficulty and being dragged further out to sea, Senior Constable Gray immediately entered the choppy water.
He attempted to communicate with the swimmers, who were in a panicked state, with one swimmer intermittently falling below the water.
At this point Surf Life Saving Queensland's Fletcher Ericson also entered the water, swimming towards the struggling pair.
On reaching them, the man was barely conscious and in need of medical attention.
The rescuers linked arms with them and began making their way to shore where emergency services were waiting.
The swimmers were transported to Bundaberg Hospital and both recovered from their ordeal.
“Had it not been for Sherylea who noticed the pair and raised the alarm with emergency services then the result would have been different,” Senior Constable Gray said.
“It is an honour to be recognised by my peers but, I did what I was sworn to do and Fletcher did what he was on call for.
“We were just doing our jobs. Police, emergency services and hospital staff do this stuff everyday. They save lives daily and do not expect recognition.”
Mr Ericson and Senior Constable Gray were recently commended for brave conduct at Government House by the Governor, Paul de Jersey AC.
While Fletcher Ericson attended the ceremony at Government House yesterday, Senior Constable Gray will wait a little longer to receive his award.
It will be presented in Bundaberg with his family, friends and peers present.
Senior Constable Gray and his partner also received a certificate of appreciation from Surf Life Saving Australia.