National News

Qld nipper to be honoured for beach rescue

A Gold Coast nipper who saved a father from drowning at a remote Sunshine Coast beach on Easter Sunday will be honoured with a surf lifesaving award.

Surf Life Saving Queensland has praised the actions of Mermaid Beach nipper Jayke Menefy, who is being hailed a hero after saving the 38-year-old man from drowning off unpatrolled Teewah Beach.

SLSQ president Mark Fife, who will present the 13-year-old with an award on Saturday in acknowledgement of his courage, says the rescue shows the value of nippers training.

"A large focus of the nippers program is introducing them to basic rescue and surf safety techniques and, if nothing else, we hope they can take those skills with them for the rest of their lives," Mr Fife said.

"Jayke's actions on that day were lifesaving in the truest sense of the word."

The day before his 13th birthday, Jayke was returning from a surfing trip with his family when they noticed a group of people in distress at the water's edge.

The Mermaid Beach nipper grabbed his board and paddled out through rough surf to the man who was being swept out to sea by a rip.

The 42kg schoolboy hauled the exhausted 100kg man on to his board and waited until help arrived to get the man back to shore.

Jayke's mum Nicole said she had no hesitation in sending her son to the rescue.

"He has been a nipper since 2013 and is a very strong swimmer. I know his capabilities," she told The Courier Mail.

Grant Brown, operations manager at Mermaid Beach Surf Life Saving Club, said the younger members of the club continually surprise him.

"I just admire the confidence they display," Mr Brown said on Thursday.

"Everyone is very proud of him and the message is slowly seeping out to our club members."

The man Jayke rescued along with his family will join Mr Fife in presenting the award to the youngster.

© AAP 2017

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