Everyday Heroes: Joella Enderes
Hailed as “the stuff of miracles”, a Western Australia waitress performed an extraordinary feat when she ran from her workplace and swam 500 metres to save a drowning child. Today in Everyday Heroes, we would like to recognise Joella Enderes’ bravery in her rescue of the five-year-old girl.
The child was paddling in a kayak when she was hit with a strong current
The girl, Noema, was playing in shallow water when the current hit, dragging her rapidly out to sea. 25-year-old Enderes was working in the Colour Patch Cafe when she heard about the situation developing. Acting entirely on instinct, Enderes dashed to the shore, stripped down and dove into the cold ocean water.
After swimming the 500 metres that Noema had drifted to, Enderes brought her back into the kayak. Enderes said that:
When I got myself into the canoe I got her to sit on my lap and had a good chat to make sure she was OK.
Together, Enderes brought the canoe back to shore, where emergency services took over.
Enderes recognised that her skills were needed, and acted accordingly
Enderes commented that her heroic deed didn’t sink in until after the girl had been safely returned to the shore. It was incredibly quick thinking on her part, as she realised that no one else was able to swim the distance required to save her. Enderes was familiar with the beach and was comfortable with swimming in the ocean. Knowing there would not be a riptide, she wasted no further time before embarking on her heroic rescue.
It was Enderes’ remarkable perception and analysis of the situation that allowed her to act as quickly as she did. She recognised that Noema was in distress, and that the only one capable of helping was herself. If it were not for her inspiring heroism, the situation would have become much more dire for Noema.
Responders at the scene were amazed by her quick response
Emergency services arrived as soon as possible to the scene. They acknowledged, however, that if Enderes had not acted it may have been too late. Marine Rescue Augusta volunteer Phil Tubb added that,
As it happened, all are safe and well, but if it was not for Ms Enderes, I think this young girl may not be alive today.
We at Hero Town Geelong commend Joella for her courage and quick thinking. For more inspirational stories of heroism, like Hero Town Geelong on Facebook.