Joussard men rescue 2 after canoe capsizes

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

Two men were rescued from the waters of Lesser Slave Lake at Joussard July 11 around 1 p.m. by two local men.

Jim Trevors and Marcel Duchesneau pulled the men to safety after their canoe capsized about 200 metres from shore.

“I was on shore and I thought I heard someone yell, ‘Help!’” says Jim Trevors.

“I couldn’t see anything, then I thought I heard a cry of help again.”

Trevors owns a 14-foot boat and prepared immediately to go out onto the lake to investigate.

As luck would have it, Doris Duchesneau, who lives next door, offered the help of her husband, Marcel.

“Do you want Marcel to come out with you?” she asked.

He did so the two set off and quickly found the two men, estimated to be in their mid-twenties and mid-forties, hanging onto a capsized canoe. They quickly rescued one man and brought him to shore while the other hung onto the canoe. Minutes later, they retuned to rescue the second.

“Marcel grabbed him around the chest and pulled him in,” says Trevors. “I couldn’t have done that. He’s [Marcel] very strong.”

After taking the second man to shore, they returned to retrieve the capsized canoe and belongings.

“These guys were lucky I had my boat in the water and ready to go, and Marcel was ready to go,” says Trevors.

It also turns out the victims were friends of the L’Heureux family, who live beside Duchesneau and Trevors.

As happy as the ending is to this story, Trevors was disturbed over one part of the incident. Apparently, some kayakers left the men in the water. One of the men said the kayakers passed by saying, “Sorry, guys, we can’t help you!”

“These guys were in distress,” says Trevors.

And he adds, the code of the lake demands you help someone in need. Trevors says if the kayakers couldn’t help, they should have paddled back to shore and found someone who could.

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