Bonbeach Life Saving Club’s President Lloyd Thomas was recently awarded Microflite Lifesaver of the Year (John Wishart Memorial Medal) at the 14th annual Awards of Excellence ceremony. It capped off a great night for his club, which was the standout achiever at the awards, taking home three of the night’s top honours. Here’s his story of being with the club.
Club: Bonbeach LSC
What does being the 2017 Lifesaver of the Year mean to you?
In a word – Overwhelming! It’s one of those things you don’t ever consider winning; even after the nomination and interview process the thought of winning just doesn’t enter your mind. It wasn’t until the following day that it actually sinks in and you think about what you have achieved and been recognised for.
How did you get involved in lifesaving?
It’s my wife’s fault. Steph always wanted to do her Bronze, but I had no idea what that even was. As Nipper parents, on the weekend of her course, we went to the beach club with the kids in tow. I was just there to look after the kids until Campbell Jordan asked me if I could swim 200 metres. I told him I could, and the rest is history.
What do you most enjoy about lifesaving?
That’s a hard one. Getting to spend your weekend at the best beach around is a major plus, but its more about the fact that it gives me an opportunity to give back.
How do you encourage others to get involved with lifesaving and volunteering?
Ask them if they can swim 200 metres….
What are some of the highlights from your involvement in lifesaving?
Nothing can top the success our club has enjoyed this year. A close second was when I got my IRB driver’s qualification – seriously, you just don’t realise how much fun that is.
When you are not at the beach or lifesaving club, what keeps you busy?
I just stumble through life trying to be a good husband and father. My boy is the easy one, no-one ever showed me the fine print on raising teenage daughters.