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What a catch! Angler saves baby that crawled into waves

06 November 2018

An 18-month-old boy is lucky to be alive after he wandered from his parents' tent on a New Zealand beach and was swept away into the ocean.

18-month-old Malachi Reeve was found by fisherman Gus Hutt floating in the water at Matata Beach, near Whakatane, on New Zealand's north island. "Even as I reached out and grabbed him by the arm, I still thought it was a doll".

"His face looked just like porcelain with his short hair wetted down, but then he let out a little squeak and I thought "oh God, this is a baby and it's alive".

He appears to have pulled the zipper on on the tent as his parents slept, crawled under the flap and made his way down to the beach at around 7 a.m.

Though he usually walks directly to the shoreline from Murphy's Holiday Camp site, he chose to set up his fishing poles 350 feet (100 meters) away from his normal spot on the sands. She said that he had tried to run into the sea on the previous day but had been stopped by his parents. They rushed to help. "I don't think my heart worked", she said. "It's the first time they've been here", Salter said. The manager directed them to the only family they knew who had come with a baby. "It was surreal to everyone involved".

Despite his near cross with death, Malachi remains unperturbed by water and still loves his showers, said Whyte. He'd floated about 15 meters (50 feet) before Hutt spotted him. "If I hadn't been there, or if I had just been a minute later, I wouldn't have seen him", Hutt told the New Zealand Herald. "But he just wasn't meant to go; it wasn't his time". "It wasn't his time". "It was terrible in between hearing that and seeing him", she said. I gave him a big hug'.

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She said she wanted to warn other parents to zip their tents up tight and consider using a padlock when camping with toddlers.

"It takes less than a minute for a child to drown", he said.

Police confirmed that they attended the emergency, adding that Malachi was now doing fine.

His parents were relieved to find their child was safe, thanking the Hutts before returning home.

"He was wriggling trying to get down to have a look at everything, he was just a lovely, cheeky little fella", Gus Hutt told the Beacon.

What a catch! Angler saves baby that crawled into waves