Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Calgary firefighter to receive Governor General’s Medal of Bravery

Firefighters have to be brave – they run into burning buildings and respond to emergencies that most of us would run away from. It is their job, after all. However, even when Calgary Firefighter Brian McRae, is off-duty, he remains courageous.

Brian McRae
And because of his off-duty courage, McRae is now on his way to Ottawa to receive one of 42 Medals of Bravery from His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, for risking his life to save four people from drowning while vacationing in Cuba in 2011.

“We are very proud to see one of our own nationally recognized for showing such bravery,” said acting Fire Chief Ken Uzeloc.“Our firefighters show courage every time they respond to a fire or emergency, but it makes us that much prouder to see a fellow firefighter recognized for showing that same bravery and courage off the job, and in this case, on vacation!”

Firefighter spots swimmers in trouble

McRae performed his medal-worthy heroics while he was on holiday in Varadero, Cuba for a friend’s wedding.  Three years ago on April 6, McRae heard people yelling and noticed they were struggling to swim in the Caribbean Sea. He grabbed two swimmers, who were from Ontario, towing them to shore.

Later that day, he returned to the beach and noticed two more swimmers struggling in the waves and again, he went into the water and brought them to shallow water safely.

National recognition in Ottawa

The Calgary Fire Department recognized McRae for his bravery in July 2011. Tomorrow, he will be acknowledged nationally when the Governor General of Canada presents him with the prestigious Medal at Rideau Hall in Ottawa.

Congratulations Calgary Firefighter Brian McRae!

The Governor General awards the Medal of Bravery (M.B.) for acts of bravery in hazardous circumstances. Find out more about the awards.

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