New Year brings new generation of crew to Abersoch RNLI
Abersoch RNLI rang in the New Year with their annual New Years Dip, it was a special morning for Senior Helmsman David ‘Fritz’ Williams as he was joined for the first time by his daughter, Enlli Williams on the Atlantic 85.
Abersoch RNLI, like many RNLI stations has a strong history of generations of families volunteering as crew members, with a number of families from the surrounding villages having strong links to the station.
Fritz joined the crew in 1990 at the age of 21, and has served as Senior Helmsman of the Abersoch crew for 10 years. Enlli, 22, is a Law Student at Bangor University but lives in Abersoch and manages her schedule with the University in order that she can be on call. Enlli began her training in late 2018, and is eagerly training to be ready for her first ‘shout’.
Enlli not only joins her father on the crew, but also her step mother Elissa Williams, a trainee helmsman and crew member of 13 years. Enlli’s partner Kyle Evans is also a probationary crew member having recently joined the crew.
‘Getting the chance to train with my Dad is really exciting. He has been on the crew longer than I have been alive and some of my earliest memories are seeing him run to respond to the pager call. I have known many of the crew since I was a small child so it feels like my family just got bigger, especially with three family members already on the crew.
Knowing the crew already gives me huge confidence in their abilities and the training that I will get at Abersoch station, and I can’t wait to put the training to good use.’
Fritz describes his feelings at seeing his daughter heading out to sea:
‘I’m very proud of Enlli, its a rare opportunity to be able to serve with one of your children and Enlli has come to the decision very naturally and in her own time. The RNLI is a historic institution and something I have been very honoured to be a part of for almost three decades, to know that my family will continue the tradition and help to save lives at sea makes me very proud. Going to sea with Enlli on New Years Day was a very special moment.’
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.