Jake Macpherson doesn't consider himself a hero.
On Saturday, the 18-year-old saved a doctor from drowning.
"Anyone in my position would have done the same thing."
There are many people who would have eyed the situation up and opted to stay on land. Not for selfish or uncaring motives, but because of a real fear of the potential for two deaths to occur - the rescuer and the rescuee.
Jake hasn't had surf lifesaving training.
"I'm not really a water person," he says.
Luckily for the person swept off the rocks at Matapouri on Whangarei's east coast, Jake had no fear of the water.
Despite, in his words, liking "land much more than the ocean".
And also luckily for the person in trouble, Jake may not be a water person but for an 18-year-old, he has an old head on young shoulders.
He assessed the situation, realised the man was wasting valuable energy, and swam out to the man, and calmed him down.
Not everyone - regardless of age - has the maturity to do that. Jake not only displayed maturity, but an understanding of the sea - that fighting it is often a fatal, panicked battle.
The man eventually clambered back up the rocks to safety.
Jake spent close to an hour in the water before emerging exhausted on Matapouri beach.