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Former Kernersville officer helps save man’s life in Myrtle Beach

KERNERSVILLE, NC (WGHP) — For former Kernersville officer Sean Houle, divine intervention isn’t just an idea. He says it’s been his reality more than once.

His name probably sounds familiar to you because in 2021, Houle was shot three times by a suspect and survived.


His injuries forced him to retire from law enforcement along with his K-9 Jax, but he never strayed from his calling to serve.

On July 4, that call rang loud and clear on the sands of North Myrtle Beach, and he sprang into action to save a life.

“He went into the water… He was fighting against that current, and he was fighting until… he got tired, and he remembers the current dragging him away,” Houle said.

Houle and his family were enjoying their time in Myrtle Beach when he noticed something was wrong.

“We were watching the kids playing in the waves and I looked to my right and saw a small crowd starting to gather around what looked to me like a man lying face up in the waves,” he said.

Houle, a retired officer who now works at Stokes County EMS, saw a woman performing CPR and ran to help.

“I took a deep breath,” Houle said. “We loaded the gentleman onto a stretcher, the stretcher into a van and he was quickly taken to an ambulance that was already waiting and had been called.”

Houle hoped the man was okay and asked a lifeguard about him the next day. The man returned to the beach.

“I looked around and saw other people who were part of our group that day who were also there. They found him too and it became a big gathering,” Houle said.

The man’s name is Bill, and Bill and his family were able to hug and thank the people who rushed to help him that day on the beach.

For the second time in his life, Houle said he knew he was in the midst of divine intervention.

“The Lord continues to work miracles in 2024… Just as I should have been dead in 2021, this man absolutely should have been dead… By the grace of God, he floats to a part of the beach where there are a handful of people with the skills necessary to save his life… That is not a coincidence,” Houle said.

It wasn’t even the beach they usually go to on vacation. Their usual camping spot was already booked and they ended up in the right place at the right time.