Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Five Manitoba heroes awarded medals

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A child fallen into icy river water, a teenager stuck on an ice floe, three women trapped in a house fire, and a disabled woman in a burning home.

All are alive today, thanks largely to the courage of five Manitobans.

Those five were honoured Friday in a Governor General's ceremony in Rideau Hall in Ottawa. Four received Medals of Bravery and one a Star of Courage.

Kole Devisscher of East St. Paul, who received a Medal of Bravery, was driving by the Red River near the Disraeli Bridge in 2010 when he spotted a boy trying to pull himself out of an open hole in the river onto the ice.

Devisscher, who had his driver's licence less than two months, took a rope from the vehicle and gingerly stepped over unsafe ice to reach the boy. He made a loop in the rope, threw it to the boy and dragged the 10-year-old to safety.

Michael Henry and Kirk Laroque received Medals of Bravery for rescuing three women from a house fire in Roseau River on Jan. 22, 2011. The men noticed flames coming from the roof of a house and ran inside. They pulled three unconscious women from the blaze. Two of the women survived.

RCMP Const. Randal Metzler received a Medal of Bravery for entering a burning house to rescue a disabled woman in Portage la Prairie on July 29, 2009. A bystander told Metzler a bedridden woman was trapped inside. He ran into her bedroom and tried to lift her, but became light-headed from smoke inhalation. He ran outside for air. Fire services arrived and were able to bring the woman safely outside.

Cpl. Joseph Martin Éric Beaudoin received a Star of Courage. He was part of a search-and-rescue team trying to save a teenager stuck on a large pan of ice drifting into Hudson Bay. The teenager was part of a hunting trip near Coral Harbour, Nunavut.

Beaudoin and M/Cpl. Robin Richardson parachuted onto a nearby ice floe and hopped ice floes until they reached the youth, who was suffering from severe hypothermia. The youth survived because of their courageous efforts.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 9, 2013 A17

History

Updated on Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 1:24 PM CST: corrects spelling of severe

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