Wesley student saves drowning man

Posted December 21, 2023 in Student Achievements By Sophie Foster

During the summer holidays, whilst many kids his age are taking a well-deserved break, Wesley student Joel Resch saved a life.

Just weeks after gaining his Bronze Medallion as part of his Marine and Maritime Studies course, Joel used his newfound skills to save a drowning man.

In windy conditions off Carnac Island, Joel was on a boat with friends, including 2024 College Captain, Jake Boniwell, when he spotted a tender swiftly floating away from a boat moored nearby.

A man jumped in after it and started to swim. When he got halfway to the tender, he began to slow down. “When I saw he was struggling and realised something was wrong, I jumped in the water, put my head down and swam like hell,” Joel said.

Upon reaching him, it was clear to Joel that the man was choking on water, not able to swim any more in the windy, choppy conditions. Immediately, his new skills kicked in. Joel assisted the man to float, catch his breath, and begin to breathe normally again until a life ring arrived.

Thanks to Joel’s quick thinking, as well as assistance from his friends, both the man and tender were saved. Joel said: “It was a group effort. I just immediately wanted to make sure he was okay. We’d rather lose the dingy than lose him.”

A competitive Water Polo player, Joel has always enjoyed fishing, so it made sense to pick Marine and Maritimes Studies General course to complement his five ATAR subjects.

It was in this course, taught by Head of Boarding, Mr Rod Steer, that he achieved his Bronze Medallion Certificate and learnt the skills that helped him save a life.

After ensuring the man was safely back with his group, Joel shook his hand and was off – all in a day’s work!

Needless to say, when marks were released for the course, Joel received an A.

Subscribe to Wesley College News & Events