If it weren’t for the bravery of a single teenager, a trip to the seashore could have ended in disaster for a mother and her son.
Eighteen-year-old Travis Shrout of Ohio was vacationing with his family in Topsail Beach, North Carolina, over the Fourth of July weekend. The teen was out boogie boarding when he heard someone calling out for help.
A dangerous riptide had developed in the surf, and Ashley Batchelor and her 10-year-old son Conner were caught in it. Ashley yelled to Travis for help, and the teen didn’t hesitate before paddling toward her on his board.
Incredibly, Thad Unkefer happened to be testing out his drone at the beach that day. He captured the entire rescue on film!
A video shows Travis swimming to the mom and handing over his boogie board before he takes off toward the little boy. Conner goes under the water several times before Travis reaches him and pulls him into a rescue hold he learned during lifeguard training. Fighting the swells, Travis tows the boy to Ashley, puts Conner on the boogie board, and continues to swim both of them to shore.
“There was a couple times where a couple waves came over our heads and kind of submerged us,” Travis said later. “They weren’t really big waves, it was just not something you want to be facing when you’re trying to get two people in I guess.”
As they got closer to shore, another young man named Andrew Leonard swam out to pull the exhausted group in.
Travis’ own mother, Gretia Shrout, saw the whole rescue unfold from shore. She’s not a strong swimmer herself, so watching her son risk his life to save others was “kind of scary.”
“It was like something out of a movie!” she later shared on Facebook. “The mom grabbed me and just started crying and shaking telling me how God sent Travis to save them, and she literally thought they were going to both die. Crazy, emotional day here. Super proud after being terrified watching it all unfold! So glad God was watching over everyone today!”
Bravo, Travis! This young man displayed amazing courage in the midst of a dangerous situation. We’re so proud of how quickly he leaped into action to save their lives.
Check out the daring rescue in the video below, and don’t forget to share this story.
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