March 20, 2006
Student honored for bravery in rescue
Senior James Wilson was honored March 16 for bravery
in the face of danger in saving the life of a young girl
caught in a strong riptide in September 2005.
James Wilson receiving his honorary
plaque from Associate Vice Chancellor Jean Marie Scott.
Photo: Louise Donahue
Once a lifeguard, always a lifeguard, said Wilson
matter-of-factly as he was presented a plaque by Jean Marie
Scott, associate vice chancellor of Colleges and University
Wilson, a lifeguard at the UCSC pool, was relaxing on a Santa
Cruz beach with his girlfriend when she noticed the girl being
pulled out by the riptide. After Wilson rushed to rescue the
girl, he said, he returned to the water to save the girl's babysitter,
who was also having trouble in the water.
While Wilson said he has saved about four people as a pool
lifeguard, the most adventure-filled rescues have been
when I'm off duty. It seems like things just happen in front
Wilson, a College Ten environmental studies major, plans to
be an interpretive guide with the East Bay Regional Parks District
when he graduates. It is the same park district where he got
his lifeguard training at 16.