Pair of young girls recognized for saving drowning boy
Two young girls who helped rescue a young boy from drowning in a Lachine pool were honoured for their bravery on Sunday.
Elyla Jennings and Shana-Maude Curadeau, both 11-year-olds, were given medals at a ceremony at Sun Youth as part of the organization’s Good Samaritan program to recognize their efforts. The pair were also given new bikes and helmets as well as gift certificates at a movie theatre and store.
The two were modest after the ceremony, with Jennings saying “I didn’t know it was a big thing to do a thing like that.”
On Aug. 4 Jennings and Curadeau were playing in the Lachine public pool when another girl asked them to help her brother, who was underwater and unable to surface.
Jennings dove in and found the boy unresponsive. She brought him to the surface and Curadeau helped get him to the edge of the pool where lifeguards and bystanders helped pull him out and began performing CPR.
“I feel happy that the boy is alive right now,” said Curadeau. “It’s the first time I ever had a reward for saving a child and it’s very comforting.”
Jennings’ mother Tina Yaxley said her daughter has made her extremely proud and had even expressed interest in becoming a lifeguard.
“Even before that, I told her ‘You’re such a great swimmer, you should be a lifeguard,’” she said. “She loves the pool, she’s there every day, all day. I can’t get her out.”
Shana-Maude’s mother Marie-Eve Curadeau said she’s happy to see what the two girls did get public recognition.
“It’s very good because it pushes them to do a good action right away when something happens,” she said.
Sun Youth Crime Prevention Coordinator Jonathan Caiise said too often people who do good things go unrecognized.
“We’re always looking out for things like that. It’s not easy to find that information because normally it’s pretty low-key and people don’t really talk about it as often as they should be,” he said.