Bridlington rescue volunteer Grant Walkington stepping down after 30 years of life-saving
A Bridlington rescue volunteer is stepping down after 30 years of helping to save lives at sea.
Grant Walkington has been attending Bridlington Lifeboat Station since he was old enough to be pushed there in a pram, and his family's connections to the station can be traced right back to The Great Gale of 1871.
His father, Fred Walkington MBE, served the station for more than 40 years, including for 25 as coxswain for the all-weather lifeboat.
Grant joined the lifeboat crew on his 17th birthday and has since crewed both the inshore lifeboat as helm and the all-weather lifeboat as deputy coxswain.
He has countless stories from launches in both lifeboats, such as rescuing two teenagers stuck in backwash near North Pier and being the all weather lifeboat coxswain in the search for the missing US Air Force pilot in June this year.
Grant said a supportive employer and family has made his three decades of volunteering possible.
“I've been really fortunate to have had the full support and encouragement of my employer, Lloyd Dowson Accountants, and this has enabled me to attend call outs during my working day,” he said.
“The support from my family has been invaluable too as they knew that their plans could change as soon as that pager went off.”
Grant said he wishes the station and its crew the best for the future and is grateful for the friends he has made and the experiences he has shared with the Bridlington community.
Due to the current Covid-19 restrictions, the crew at Bridlington were unable to give Grant the send-off he deserves but Bridlington Lifeboat Station Chairman Dave Garnett offered his thanks on behalf of the RNLI and the station.
“Grant has been a wonderfully dedicated volunteer at Bridlington and we're sad to see him step down,” he said.
“I'm sure I speak for a huge amount of people in expressing my gratitude for the sacrifices that both Grant and his family have made in the name of saving lives at sea.”
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