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Officer jumps into shark infested waters to save man

Year 1890

Read by Rollo Grandy – Supporter, Royal Humane Society

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Cooper, Alfred John, Fourth Officer.

Stanhope Gold Medal 1890.

On the 8th April, 1890, whilst the Steamship Massilia was proceeding from Bombay to London, a lascar fell overboard in the Gulf of Aden. The ship was going at thirteen knots.

Mr. Cooper who was in the saloon at the time, on hearing the cry of man overboard rushed on deck, jumped overboard, swam after the man, seized hold of him, and kept him afloat until a boat was lowered and went to his assistance.

The officer encountered serious risk, as he was encumbered with clothes and the native clung to him in the water.

The gulf is known to be infested with sharks. Awarded the Albert Medal for the same act.

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