Lifeguard Didn't Know He Was Saving Heir to Throne

Nick Malcolm rescued Denmark's Prince Christian, 10, from perilous Aussie riptide
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 21, 2015 10:45 AM CST
Lifeguard Didn't Know He Was Saving Heir to Throne
Frederik, crown prince of Denmark, and his wife, Crown Princess Mary, attend an event at a hotel in Hamburg, Germany, May 19, 2015.   (Christian Charisius/dpa via AP)

A lifeguard on Australia's Gold Coast saved a 10-year-old boy from rough waters Thursday, except it wasn't just any 10-year-old boy: It was Denmark's Prince Christian, on vacation with his family, 7 News Australia reports. The young heir to the throne was caught in a riptide at Queensland's Mermaid Beach, and when Nick Malcolm saw the boy struggling, he dove into the ocean, per the Telegraph. Chief lifeguard Warren Young says that Christian, the son of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary, was a "good little swimmer" who was hanging out in the lifeguard-monitored area between beach flags and who didn't freak out as he started getting dragged into deeper waters. Malcolm paddled out on his board, pulled the boy up, and brought him back to shore.

"We got [the prince] before it got too serious, but he wouldn't have come back in" without Malcolm, another of the lifeguard's supervisors tells 7 News. Prince Frederik, who had been swimming nearby with Princess Mary and Christian's three siblings, personally thanked Malcolm, a native New Zealander, the Times notes. But Malcolm didn't realize at first who was doing the thanking. "He didn't know who it was until someone said, 'Oh, that was the royal family from Denmark,' and Nick said, 'Oh, OK,'" Young tells the Telegraph. This wasn't Malcolm's first beach save, either: In January 2014, he pulled a 68-year-old tourist from the water and helped with lifesaving efforts until medics arrived, the Brisbane Times reports. (A Florida lifeguard was fired for saving a drowning man.)

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