A permanent fixture on the hit Channel 10 series, Bondi Rescue, and an uncontested Aussie hero, Anthony ‘Harries’ Carroll has spent the majority of his life braving the toughest and most dangerous parts of the ocean to save those struggling to survive.
But behind his big smile, bubbly personality and happy go lucky attitude is man who faced many challenges as a child.
Growing up in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs, Anthony and his twin brother— who both excelled on the sporting field and in the ocean—had learning difficulties. Unable to write his name own name until he was in year two, Harries was relieved when he found out he had Dyslexia. However, with this diagnosis came a sea of hate from his peers at school.
“We used to wear these yellow glasses and I got teased a lot. We would see everyone achieving and we weren’t able to,” he exclusively tells our WHO ARE YOU podcast, in a highly revealing interview. “I would have to read something four or five times to comprehend it. Learning was really hard.”
After leaving school, Harries— who now jokes that he no longer needs to know how to spell thanks to iPhones—went into landscape gardening before he found a passion that he knew he could make a career out of – life saving.
“What I am passionate about and what I am good at is being out in thocean and helping the community,” says Harries, who has rescued an incredible 5000 people.
Two decades on and Harries has earned the respect and adoration of millions of Australians who tune in every week to watch him battle the surf on the small screen.
He’s even rescued Hugh Jackman’s son, admitting the Australian actor took him out for coffee as a thank you. But his biggest achievement to date? Starting a family with his wife Lucy – who he met on a blind date and admits it was love at first sight. The happy couple share two boys together, Billy, nearly 5, and Leo, 2.
“It is life changing having kids. It’s the best thing in the world and nothing compares,” the doting dad says lovingly.
“My whole life has been about going for a surf and dreaming about the surf but once you have kids, I would hand back 250 surfs for each kid. That’s how good it was having them. It’s crazy.”