College student finalist in St John's Ambulance First Aid Awards

Posted on Friday 12 October 2012

Please vote for Lee Craven for this award

College student Lee Craven, saved his friend's life earlier this year, has just been announced in the Mail on Sunday as one of this year’s five finalists for a First Aid Award. The winner is selected by public vote.

St John’s Ambulance are honouring Britain’s bravest lifesavers.  Lee put his own life at extreme risk in a serious emergency situation to save his friend’s life: “ When Lee’s friend needed him most, Lee’s quick thinking actions saved his friends life from drowning in a frozen canal.  Lee’s first aid skills learnt at Scouts prevented Max getting hypothermia.”

Read more about Lee in the Mail on Sunday – 7th Oct:

You can cast your vote by going to the website and voting on-line: by 17 October.

Lee’s life-saving Actions:
• It was one of the coldest night of the year back in early February with a Met Office amber weather warning.
• The canal was frozen over and Lee’s friend thought it was a by-way trod on it in the dark and plummeted into freezing water, the strong current moved him away and he was in danger of drowning.
• Lee heard the screams of other friends who did not know what to do and ran to the scene and had to act quickly to find a way to help.
• Lee saw a tree stump at side of canal, wrapped his legs around it, stretched his body over the ice, submerged his top half of body in hole in ice. Lee thought he was going to fall in himself but knew this was his only chance to save his friends life .
• Lee could not see Max, so he stretched out as far as he could and with sweeping actions underwater found Max’s fingertips and grabbed them.  With all his strength he pulled Max out of canal and to safety.
• Lee remembered his First Aid he had learnt at Scouts and for his DofE awards and noticed that Max was displaying early signs of hypothermia, was shocked and unable to speak.
• Lee proceeded to do all the right things so Max did not get hypothermia, took him back to house, and ensured he warmed up gradually with dry cloths and keeping his body warm.  Lee phoned Max’s mother and reassured her; she said: 'Lee was amazing and without him and his braveness that cold, icy evening I cannot even begin to think what could have happened to Max.'
• The emergency services were not required and Max made a full recovery that evening.
• Lee realised how important it is to be prepared for emergencies. Lee and Max went on to do a Lifeguarding course together.  Max said as his introduction to course: “This is Lee my best buddy, who saved my life.'

Lee was nominated for the Guy Evans Award by his mother Jennie who said: ‘I am so pleased for Lee as he was exceptionally brave.  I am proud of how he saved his friends life.  Even though he put his own life at serious risk, his only thoughts were for rescuing his friend, on one of the coldest nights of the year.  His quick thinking, extreme courage in such a dangerous and difficult emergency was amazing.  Lee calmly, took control, life-saving his friend, then treating him for hyperthermia.  I feel so very grateful that they are both alive and I think Lee is a true life-saving hero.’

Lee said on hearing about the award: 'I’m really so very honoured to be shortlisted for the St John’s First Aid award.  I struggle at College with my dyslexia and learning difficulties and I am pleased I could think quickly to save Max’s life.  I know it was really dangerous and we had so little time and we could have both died.  When my friend needed me most I was there for him.'

Thank you for reading this.  Lee will be grateful for your votes 

Lee Craven - hero's prize for icy rescue

Lee Craven - hero's prize for icy rescue