Matthew Bryce, 23, told the BBC that he “was pretty certain” he was going to die. He had driven to the Westport car park in the Kintyre peninsula on Sunday morning and was going to surf by himself for a couple of hours. But strong winds, currents and the tide pulled him out.
“The wind and water was just relentless,” he said. “It got to the point where my paddling was ineffective, but I was doing it to keep myself warm.”
Eventually, night fell and Bryce didn’t think he would see sunrise the next morning. “I was thinking I was going to die — I was almost convinced. I didn’t think I would see sunrise.”
He saw a shipping lane in the distance that evening and started heading towards. Bryce made it to sunrise the next morning and he continued to hold on. He continued drifting throughout the day and night began to come again. But then a helicopter flew over. This would be the Coast Guard helicopter that rescued him.
“I can’t describe it at all,” he told BBC. “These guys were the most beautiful sight I had ever seen. I owe them my life.”
Now reunited with his parents in a Belfast hospital, Bryce also told the BBC he would not be surfing again. Going through an ordeal of this magnitude, we certainly don’t blame him for that and are glad he’s recovering from hypothermia and exposure.
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