By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A surfer in Minnesota is being called a hero after rescuing on Wednesday a man and a dog who were struggling in the chilly waters of Lake Superior.

The Duluth Police Department says the rescue happened just after the surfer, Darby Voeks, finished his North Shore surf session at Park Point.

A woman approached him, saying her dog got loose from its collar and jumped in the lake. Her friend went in after the dog. Both then began to struggle in the cold waters near the Aerial Lift Bridge.

That’s when Voeks, in his thick wetsuit, jumped in the lake without any hesitation.

Voeks got the dog and the woman’s friend out of the water before police and firefighters arrived at the scene. Other than being cold, the friend and the dog were unharmed.

Following the rescue, a police lieutenant decided to nominate Voeks, who is from the Twin Cities, for the Duluth Citizen Partnership Award.

“This award is given out in rare occasions,” the police department wrote on its Facebook page. “We would make the argument that Darby is a rare individual.”

Voeks drove to Duluth before sunrise Wednesday to surf, the police said.

The North Shore is an unlikely surf spot, but winter winds can kick up big waves.