Reluctant hero to receive life saving award

Larry Sandberg is a reluctant hero who may soon be embarrassed by provincial accolades.

Larry Sandberg is a reluctant hero who may soon be embarrassed by provincial accolades.

The Port Hardy man who was vital in the sea rescue of a pair of fishermen a few months back is about to be honoured with a lieutenant governor’s award, despite the fact he says he’s no hero.

Sandberg said he received a registered letter informing him of the honour,  just after he got phone call a week previous to receiving the registered letter.

“They said on the phone that I had been nominated by someone to receive a medal,” said Sandberg, who works as the health and safety and first aid worker at Neucel Specialty Cellulose in Port Alice.

“They asked some questions and said they contacted the coast guard, the police and it went to a nominating committee which decided I deserved the medal,” he said.

On Sept. 11, Sandberg and his wife waited out a dense fog before they put their boat in the water to try and hook some fish out front of Cluxewe Resort.

But the fog rolled back in, forcing the couple to beach their boat.

That’s when Sandberg heard a faint, “help” from somewhere out in the fog-shrouded water.

“It wasn’t panicked, but the voice said: “Help, we’re both in the water,” Sandberg said in a September interview.

Sandberg said he earlier noted a boat with two young men in it, headed for the vast kelp bed off the shore of the resort.

“I could only see out there about 150-ft, but I got a bearing on the sound and headed out,” he recalled.

Sandberg spotted the silhouettes of the men about 100-ft into the kelp bed,  turned his 12-ft. boat to the bed then shut off his motor to paddle the rest of the distance.

“I saw the back end of the boat upside down and the motor kind of sticking in the air for maybe 15 seconds before the whole thing went under., he recalled.

One man, from Sointula, was on the boat, and his male fishing companion was about 12-feet away.

“I told the guy who was chest high in the water standing on the submerged boat to wait until I transferred my weight to the other side of the boat and you roll in.”

That done, the other man in the water threw a line to Sandberg.

By that time a couple of Zodiacs appeared to help out. The rescue was incredible, said witness Randy Ball.

“Out of the fog came Mr. Sandberg’s boat with the two rescued men aboard, towing the upside-down boat behind them” he said.

“There was no way they could have righted the boat.”

Sandberg said he didn’t want to be made out as “some kind” of hero. “I’m just glad I was able to help out,” he said.

As of yet, it’s unclear what medal Sandberg will receive.

“They stated I was receiving a rescue award March 10, but there are different categories and I don’t know which one I’m receiving,” he said.

“There is one for merit, bravery and a gold one that is chosen by the lieutenant governor, but I have no idea which one I am getting.”

Sandberg  will be honoured at the annual Life Saving Society ceremony at the Hotel Vancouver in the Pacific Ballroom

More details will be printed as the become known.

 

Just Posted

Port Alice showcases piano and vocal students

North Island Song hosts year-end recital at Ocean View church

More than 150 tremors hit Vancouver Island in last 24 hours

Seismologists monitor to see if pressure will be added to major fault

‘Daddy bonus’ common in B.C. workplaces, study finds

UBC researchers say dads don’t have to be number one in the office to get a raise

Workshop teaches meaningful conservation messaging

MERS held their first North Island marine naturalist workshop in Port McNeill

VIDEO: Local athletes fell their competition at Port McNeill Logger Sports event

The Briscoe sisters will be travelling to upcoming Logger Sports shows all throughout the summer.

Homeless people living on ‘Surrey Strip’ move into modular housing

BC Housing says 160 homeless people are being moved into temporary Whalley suites from June 19 to 21

Trial date set for alleged animal abusers on Van Isle

Anderson Joe and Melissa Tooshley pleaded not guilty and will go to trial in February 2019; their dog Teddy died from severe neglect

Former B.C. gangster arrested for drug operation in India

Jimi Sandhu, deported in 2016, accused of owning drug-manufacturing facility

BC Ferries posts strong earnings before rate cuts

Last year highest ever for vehicle traffic, most walk-ons in 20 years

Snapchat used to make mass shooting threat in Kamloops

RCMP did not dub the threat a hoax, instead called it “unsubstantiated”

B.C. groups file response to government’s fight against solitary confinement

B.C. Supreme Court judge suspended ruling for one year to give government time to draft legislation

National sports organizations have to report allegations of abuse immediately

Sporting organizations will lose federal funding if abuse goes unreported, says Kirsty Duncan

BC conservation officers release badger from wolf trap

Badger recovering after being caught in trap near Williams Lake

B.C. Christian school mulls covenant, future of law school after court ruling

The university still wants to open a law school, but is looking at its options.

Most Read