Vice President and Senior Wet Crew for Coastguard Rotorua Lakes
Sam grew up on the Lake Rotorua edge and started completing Coastguard work before he was even volunteering in the unit.
Growing up he often saw people getting into trouble on the lake, his close proximity to the water meant he would lend a helping hand anytime he could.
Like every Coastguard volunteer, Sam gets a real kick out of bringing people home safely. It’s one of the many reasons he has stuck with Coastguard.
One rescue in particular sticks out for the young volunteer. A father and daughter were in a bad way after coming off their jet ski. Badly injured and losing hope, the pair were so grateful to see the vessel coming to their rescue.
"I still remember being at the helm, coming up to them and seeing their faces light up when they come up to us. It was pretty heartbreaking, but it awesome being there to help.”
Coastguard Units come in all shapes and sizes, each playing a vital part in significantly reducing the number of lives lost on waterways throughout Aotearoa. Coastguard has seven Units that specifically service New Zealand’s major lakes, each offering unique features and requiring different considerations compared to Units which work on the coastline.