There is no greater gift than saving a life and Candace did just that this month. Read below about Candace's quick-thinking, action and selfless act of courage...
On September 20th, 2014 Candace Stalder was competing in the Western Surfing Association Tour Event #2 Championship being held at Surfer's Point in Ventura. In her final heat late in the afternoon; Candace was the only surfer in the water to notice and take
action on behalf of a young man caught in a rip and only moments from
certain drowning, she saved his life.
In the middle of her final heat, Candace heard the desperate yet fading cries of a man calling for help and scanned the horizon to see a man with his arms flailing in the air being swept out to sea.
Without thinking Candace paddled fast and hard well outside the contest area to reach the victim who was attempting to scream for help but was tiring quickly and beginning to go under.
Upon reaching the husky young man in his mid-twenties, Candace noted his lips were blue and he was foaming at the mouth. Candace reassured him he was not going to drown, she was not going to leave him and implored him to follow her directions.
Although a husky young man and not used to being on a surfboard, Candace got him onto her board and began swimming him to shore.
Once closer to the beach, other surfers noticed and began assisting along with the young man's friends who were watching in horror and disbelief.
Once on the beach, Candace learned only that the young man's name was Kevin and he was visiting from Anaheim with friends. Of course Kevin and his friends were extremely grateful for Candace's quick thinking and life-saving actions.
No Lifeguards were on duty, none of the contestants or judges appeared to have noticed what Candace had done and she had just enough time to return to the contest area for the end of her heat which was nearly over.
When your instincts take over in an emergency like this one and you do something heroic you are often left shaken and profoundly affected by the gravity of what just happened. It is especially hard in a situation like this one where not too many people noticed or were aware of the graveness of the situation.
Kevin and his friends know what Candace did though and now we know, too. Candace's quick-thinking and decisive action saved this young man's life...