Foodland employee Ryan McIlwain, right, with Lakefield Foodland's Ross Bletsoe. File photoRyan McIIwain, right, with Foodland Lakefield store co-owner Ross Bletsoe. McIlwain received the Carnegie Medal for an act of supreme bravery last summer.

A Lakefield, ON, Foodland employee has received the Carnegie Medal for an act of supreme bravery last summer.

As reported in the Nov./Dec. 2018 issue of Grocery Business, 16-year-old Ryan McIlwain was on his lunch break at his job at the Foodland store in Lakefield when he heard cries for help from the nearby Otonabee river. When he spotted a man in the water, he dove in, swam about 25 metres and pulled him to shore. A passerby also helped.

McIlwain is among 18 Canadians and Americans who have now been awarded the Carnegie Medal by the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission in recognition of their heroism. The Carnegie Medal is given throughout the U.S. and Canada to those who risk their lives to an extraordinary degree while saving or attempting to save the lives of others.

Along with the other recipients – or in some cases their survivors – McIlwain will also receive a financial grant.

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