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Local rescuer receives life saving award

Left to right: Jami Harris (Branch Manager- Comox Valley St. John Ambulance), Ben Douglas (Area Commissioner-Vancouver Island St. John Ambulance), Lee Murray and his children, Norm Potvin (Divisional Supervisor-Comox Valley St. John Ambulance), Inspector Blair McDonald (Officer in Charge-Comox Valley RCMP). - PHOTO SUBMITTED
Left to right: Jami Harris (Branch Manager- Comox Valley St. John Ambulance), Ben Douglas (Area Commissioner-Vancouver Island St. John Ambulance), Lee Murray and his children, Norm Potvin (Divisional Supervisor-Comox Valley St. John Ambulance), Inspector Blair McDonald (Officer in Charge-Comox Valley RCMP).
— image credit: PHOTO SUBMITTED

A local man received the St. John Ambulance Life-Saving Award after rescuing a woman earlier this year from the fast flowing waters of the Puntledge River in Courtenay.

On July 23rd, Lee Murray was enjoying a summer day with his two young children when he heard cries for help. A 60-year-old woman was tubing down the river with a friend when she hit a log and was knocked under the water.

She not know how to swim, and she also had a long line of rope attached to her which caught at the bottom of the river. The rope was choking her while also pulling her under.

Murray dove under the water and fought hard to free the rope. He then brought the woman to shore where CPR was then performed until paramedics arrived on scene.

The woman was immediately air lifted to Victoria General Hospital from St. Joseph's Hospital in Comox. She has since recovered from her injuries.

"Mr. Murray's calm demeanour and quick action most definitely helped save this woman's life. People like Lee help make our community a better place," said Inspector McDonald of the Comox Valley RCMP.

The Comox Valley RCMP nominated Lee Murray for the St. John's Life-Saving Award shortly after the event, which was then quickly approved by their offices.

Presentation of the award was made at a small ceremony in Courtenay on December 2nd.

— Comox Valley RCMP

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