Three heroes were honoured with a Medal of Bravery at a ceremony held today, Sept. 28, at Province House in Halifax.
The Medal of Bravery is awarded each year to individuals who have risked their life protecting the life or property of others.
“Today we are reminded that heroes are real,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “The people being honoured today saved lives, and I want to thank you and your families on behalf of all Nova Scotians for your heroism.”
This year’s recipients are Nicole Foran of Halifax Regional Municipality, Jeremiah (Jerry) Spargo, Halifax Regional Municipality, and the late Anne Michelle Curtis of Lingan, Cape Breton Regional Municipality.
On April 9, 2009, Ms. Foran was an attendant on a flight that had just landed in Jamaica when an armed gunman boarded the plane, and held 159 passengers and crew members hostage. Ms. Foran and a colleague negotiated with the gunman to free the passengers in exchange for valuables. The hijacking then continued with the crew members held hostage at gun point. After eight hours, Ms. Foran distracted and disarmed the gunman at the exact time authorities entered the plane. The crew members were released to safety and the hijacker was apprehended.
On Jan. 13, 2016, Mr. Spargo was headed out to shovel when he noticed flames coming from his neighbour’s home. Without hesitation, the 84-year-old yelled to his wife to call 911 and went to help. Knowing his neighbour was unable to walk, he entered the burning home. He saw his neighbour, lying on the floor with her clothes on fire. Mr. Spargo pulled her out before first responders arrived.
Mr. Spargo’s fast thinking and quick actions saved his neighbour’s life that day.
Ms. Curtis was enjoying time with family and friends on Aug. 2, 2015, at MacLeod’s Campground Beach in Inverness when three children began yelling for help as a riptide pulled them out to sea. She was the first parent into the water and to reach the children. She got two of the children to safety but a third was still in danger. As the riptide’s strength increased, she was able to bring the child back to a place where shore was within reach. With the three children safe, Ms. Curtis made it back to shore where she collapsed and tragically was not able to be resuscitated.
For more information on medal recipients, or to find out how to nominate a hero, visit http://www.novascotia.ca/bravery.