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Kelowna Rockets forward Ty Hurley used first-aid skills to save life of drowning man

Nineteen-year-old Sherwood Park, Alta. native selected for WHL's Doug Wickenheiser humanitarian award
Kelowna Rockets forward Ty Hurley was selected for the WHL's Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy as humanitarian of the year after he saved the life of a drowning man.

Kelowna Rockets forward Ty Hurley was selected Thursday for the WHL’s Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy as humanitarian of the year.

The 19-year-old Kelowna Rockets forward saved the life of a drowning man in a hotel pool Dec. 7 in Strathmore, Alta., while the Rockets were on their Prairie roadswing.

Hurley was in the lobby of the hotel when he noticed the fully-clothed man floundering in the pool. He entered the pool area and watched the man closer and when it appeared he was in trouble, Hurley removed his shirt and reached into the pool to pull the unconscious man out.

He determined he was not breathing on his own and started chest compressions. Hurley had taken a first-aid course four years ago to be an off-season lifeguard and his training immediately came back to him. After about 15 or 20 compressions, the man started breathing on his own again, but had a weak pulse and no colour in his hands.

Hurley remained with the man until an ambulance arrived. He was taken to hospital and survived.

Hurley, a native of Sherwood Park, Alta., was recognized for his heroic actions at the Commonwealth Awards for Honour and Rescue and received the Silver Medal of Merit and the M.G. Griffiths Award by the Lifesaving Society of B.C. and the Yukon.

Determined in a vote of the league’s general managers and media, the Wickenheiser award recognizes the work players do to help and enhance they community in which they play. In 2001 the trophy was named in honour of former Regina Pats forward Doug Wickenheiser for his contributions on and off the ice.
The other nominees were:

• Central Division – Shane Smith, Medicine Hat Tigers

• East Division – Evan Gardner, Saskatoon Blades

• U.S. Division – Ty Palmer, Everett Silvertips.