Montrealer Serge Bohec is being named a Good Samaritan by Sun Youth after helping to save a man who had fallen in the St. Lawrence River.
Bohec was at his boat in the Bassin de l'Horloge in the Old Port this past October when he noticed a man by the water.
When he looked back a minute later, the man had disappeared.
"I ran over to see what happened." he said, "Night was falling, and it was cold. I saw nobody, the water wasn't moving, there were no bubbles. I looked everywhere for five minutes."
Bohec thought about jumping in himself but was unsure whether the man had fallen in.
"Then I saw that the man was trying to crawl out of the water," on to a nearby dock, said Bohec.
"He managed to swim about 150 feet in the cold water, completely dressed, wearing shoes and a leather jacket."
'He was in a state of hypothermia'
He helped the man out of the water and tried to warm him up.
"He was in a state of hypothermia and wasn't moving," said Bohec.
He called 9-1-1 and directed emergency services to his location.
When the police arrived, they told him that the man he'd just helped save was a homeless man they were familiar with, who they said was named Claude.
The man was transported to the hospital by ambulance.
Bohec says he's not sure what the man was doing down by the water or even if he fell into the water by accident or went in on purpose.
'He probably would have died if I weren't there'
"I feel like someone who did what he had to do," says Bohec, "I was in the right place at the right time. It's true that he probably would have died if I weren't there. But I never put my life on the line."
In a ceremony Friday, Bohec will receive a plaque celebrating his actions.
He's the first good Samaritan to be recognized by Sun Youth in 2016.