Sick sea turtle rescued by Ocean Isle Beach paddleboarder


OCEAN ISLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Good deeds are popping up all over the country, including right here in our own backyard where a local teen went out of his way to try and save an animal.

A normal day of paddle board surfing turned into a life save mission for 13-year-old Joseph Hamric.

- Advertisement -

“I just saw it floating and I could tell it something was wrong with it,” Hamric said. “Normally when you see turtles they’ll just swim down and mind their own business, but this one didn’t seem to swim down.”

It was a helpless sick female sea turtle struggling to battle the ocean waves and that’s when Hamric decided it was time to take action.

“I came back in and told my parents and then they said ‘well no we should grab it and put it on the board and bring it back,'” says Hamric. “So, I paddled back out there and my sister helped me get it up on the board. I put it on the board and we brought it back in.”

It’s simple actions like these that can’t help but make a parent proud.

“He didn’t hesitate, picked his board up, and he walked out there,” Joseph’s mother Anna Jackson said. “He held her head up above water and put her up on the board. I was very proud of him.”

Unfortunately, the female sea turtle did not survive after it was taken to a rehabilitation facility in Surf City. Hamric says he know in his mind he did the right thing, when there were no other options.

“I feel like I did a good thing by giving it a chance because if it had something wrong with it and not just old age, it had a chance to live,” Hamric said.

The sea turtle nesting season runs from mid-May until August in North Carolina.

If you find an injured or sick sea turtle, here are ways to contact help.