Gavin Pike

KNX Hero of the Week
Thursday, February 13th
The Southern California coastline is a beautiful place, visited every day by tourists from around the world. 

But the water can also be dangerous, as it was for a family from Oregon, who had to be rescued by our KNX Hero of the Week.

It was an afternoon of watching the waves along the coastline of Laguna Beach for 15-year-old Gavin Pike, who was waiting for his mom to pick him up after school. As he sat there, he noticed something odd with a family that was wading into the water. 

"There was something wrong," says Gavin. "No one goes out that far, especially in the winter when its cold and windy, and [when] the tide's really low. No one would go out that far, just for the fun of it." 

Gavin figured out quickly that two of the swimmers were caught in a riptide.

"In less than a minute, they went from being knee-deep, to not being able to touch the [ocean] floor." 

Gavin has a lot of experience in the water, as a member of his high school's water polo team, swim team and surf team. Just a week prior to this moment, Gavin had taken a one-day training session that taught basic life-saving skills, like how to notice a rip current from the shoreline.


"How to notice when someone's drowning," explains Gavin, "and what to do when someone is drowning."

Without hesitation, Gavin put that skill-training to the test. The high school sophomore jumped into the ocean and began swimming to the mother and son who were struggling in the cold, choppy waters. 

"[The son] wasn't strong enough of a swimmer to sustain both himself and his mom's head above water," says Gavin.  "And it was really low tide, so you have to watch out for sharp rocks shooting up everywhere." 

It was a very dangerous situation. 

With his strength and swimming skills, Gavin managed to support both back to the beach to safety. The mother immediately collapsed on the sand, but fortunately, first responders had arrived and she was able to get treated. 

"Gavin's acts were heroic." 

Kai Bond is the Marine Safety Captain for the City of Laguna Beach. He says Gavin is truly a hero. "He was put into a situation where he had to risk his own life in order to save others, and he took the call." 

KNX 1070 News
KNX 1070 News

"[It's] definitely something that he should be proud of for the rest of his life," says Bond. 

For his quick actions to save a family in need, we are honoring 15-year-old Gavin Pike as Our KNX Hero of the week! 

KNX 1070 News
KNX 1070 News

KNX Heroes is presented by California Resources Corporation, saluting our military veterans, and all of our heroes! 

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