River rescuers in Chilliwack cited for bravery

The boy was crossing the river at Gill road, when he slipped, and fell into the Fraser River near Chilliwack

River rescuers Colin Lang

A young boy swept down the Fraser River last month was pretty lucky to survive the ordeal near Chilliwack.

His rescuers, Colin Lang, with Gary Lenihan, were recognized for bravery at Chilliwack city hall Tuesday.

The boy was crossing the river at Gill road, when he slipped, and fell into the swift current. He was swept away as his family watched in abject horror.

Meanwhile friends further along the shore heard screaming.

Colin Lang jumped into the swirling river without a thought for his own safety.

Lang almost grabbed the boy as he travelled in knee-deep water, but he kept going until he became stranded on a log stump.

The rescuer was also swept away the current but managed to swim to shore, run up the bank and jump back in.

Lang somehow reached the frightened boy.

He was panicked and tried to climb onto his rescuer, dunking him underwater several times.

Fortunately, they made it to shore, where a few friends, including Gary Lanihan, were there to help.

The boy was visibly shaken, but okay after the rescue.

“Thanks to Colin, Gary, and their friends on shore, that boy is alive today,” said Mayor Sharon Gaetz on Tuesday.

She told the crowd that Lang had also lost his glasses during the rescue. His kind friends on Facebook, took up a collection to help get him new glasses, she noted.

The Lang and Lenihan came up to the front of council chambers to receive their certificates.

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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