David MacAskill presented with Bronze Medal for Gallantry

Last Friday (18 November) Lochinver Coxswain David MacAskill was presented with one of the RNLI’s top accolades – the Bronze Medal for Gallantry – for his courage and determination during a stormy night time rescue when four lives were saved.
David MacAskill presented with Bronze Medal for Gallantry

Photo: RNLI/Richard Smith

On 7 December 2014, the Lochinver RNLI crew braved gale force winds, 10 metre seas and a thunderstorm on the all-weather lifeboat Julian and Margaret Leonard to bring the fish carrier vessel, Norholm, to safety. After nearly 12 hours of battling with the elements and two broken tow lines, the crew brought the vessel clear of danger and were able to pass the tow to their colleagues from Thurso RNLI.

The RNLI’s new Chairman, Stuart Popham presented the medal to David MacAskill at a presentation ceremony in Lochinver. Six RNLI volunteer crew members were also recognised for their part in the rescue of Norholm’s crew. Stuart Gudgeon, Robert Kinnaird, James MacAskill, John K Templeton, Joseph Mackay and Lachlan D MacAskill received Letters of Thanks from Stuart.

Coxswain MacAskill has been on the Lochinver crew for 26 years, and was delighted to accept the medal which was also recognition for the volunteer crew involved in the rescue. This is the first time in Lochinver’s nearly 50-year history that the station has received such an award for saving lives at sea. It is the seventh Bronze Medal to be awarded in Scotland in the last 16 years.

At the ceremony, Stuart Popham praised the courage and skill of the crew in carrying out the rescue almost two years ago.

There’s no doubt that four people are only alive today because of what you did that night and that is why this is one of those rescues that deserves special recognition for true RNLI gallantry.

To the whole crew who launched into the darkness and into extremely rough seas, on behalf of the RNLI, you have our utmost respect and admiration.

Watch the presentation video