Local heroes receive Governor General awards

Photo: Carter Cummings received his certificate of commendation for flagging down a car to call for help after his family was in a car crash./ Kimberley Molina

Two residents of the City of Fort St. John have received Governor General Certificates of Commendation.

Werner Wiens and Carter Cummings received the awards, Monday, because of their personal heroic efforts in helping to save other people’s lives.

The presentations took place at City Council, Monday, and were given out by Mayor Bruce Lantz, representing the Governor General of Canada.

The first certificate was presented to Wiens because of his efforts in helping his gospel group.

The group had gone to Medicine Hat, Alberta to attend a funeral in September 2008 and on their return the plane that he was piloting had engine trouble after takeoff.

Wiens was credited for keeping the twin engine Beach Baron steady and landing the plane in the Saskatchewan River.

Although Wiens was injured after tree branches broke through the windshield, he walked five kilometres to get help.

Photo: Werner Wiens was presented the Governor General award for landing the plane he was flying then walking several kilometres to get help./Kimberley Molina

“It’s very humbling to be recognized in this way. You tend to think that anybody in a similar situation would do the exact same thing,” he says.

The second certificate was presented to eight year-old Cummings. He was credited for getting help for his mother and younger brother after they had been involved in a car accident in Kootenay National Park in August 2009.

The car had travelled down a 50-foot embankment and he had to force the door open to escape. He was able to get to the road where several cars passed by him before he was able to flag someone down to call for help.

Lantz says he feels proud to be a resident of Fort St. John knowing there are people like Wiens and Cummings in the community.

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The decorations were created in 1993 and are “awarded to those who have made a significant contribution by providing assistance to another person in a selfless manner.” Nominated candidates have to be voted on by the Canadian Decorations Advisory Committee.

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