Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Senior helm

Steve has been our Senior ILB Helmsman for the last 7 years. This is not an official position in the eyes of the Institution, but it is one which we have always had as we feel that it gives much needed leadership to the younger and less experienced part of our crew. And Steve has done this job tremendously well.

He is known for being a stickler for details and analysing how everything is done to ensure that we are always doing the right thing. He has also been a great teacher of new and inexperienced crewmembers (he inducted me into the crew) as well as having led from the front with demonstrably high level of skill as a boathandler on shouts.

However, Steve has now reached the grand old age of 45 and so has had to retire from sea-going duties in the ILB. Consequently he is no longer able to continue as the senior helm of the ILB.

So Steve now moves to being ALB crew only where his skills as a navigator, radio operator, first aider and yachtjumper will no doubt be in high demand. Good luck for the future and thanks for everything you've done in the ILB mate.

So some time ago the current ILB helms got together and decided amongst themselves who was going to succeed him. None of us are sure how this decision was reached, however, Tom's name rose to the top of the pile and so he has now taken over from Steve as Senior Helm. No doubt he will put his own unique stamp on the role! Good luck mate.

Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on that sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

(Dylan Thomas)


Anonymous said...

Wot, no extension till 50?

lifeboatjohn said...

Well, it is possible, however, the ILB is pretty hard no your body and despite being fit enought ot carry on Steve has quite sensibly decided that 45 is enough!

Unknown said...

Hi John,

In the second photo, Steve is being strapped to something. What is it? And what is it used for?

I only ask, as it looks similar to a KED - a Kensington Extrication Device that is used to immobilise patients with neck or back injuries where the use of a board is not possible straight away (for example, for vehicle extractions where it's infeasible to remove the roof). Is it used for the same purpose? As I quite like the straps to secure the arm - I've not seen them on a KED!


lifeboatjohn said...

Hi Nick,

No, not a KED.

It's a Neil Robinson stretcher which are used at sea where casualties need to be manoeuvered through hatches and up steep ladders etc. They are very good because they immobilise the patient, can be lifted anyway you like (even vertically or upside down)! However, they are not a spinal board, because they are made of strips of bamboo inside the heavy cotton they are in fact flexible and so with spinal injuries once we had extracted the casualty we would then put the whole thing in a rigid basket stretcher.