Andre Bouvier Sr. walking Shannon St. Onge to safety. Photo Credit: Shannon St. Onge/Facebook.com
Andre Bouvier Sr. is being recognized as a brave and valiant hero. He walked almost half of a mile in the middle of a winter's dense blizzard to rescue not only a young lady by the name of Shannon St Onge but six other people who were stranded in their cars.
A Blizzard the Residents Called a “Saskatchewan Screamer”
The snowstorm left many people in chaos. Shannon St. Onge was one of those unfortunate people who had very little time left to finish her errands as the snowstorm was approaching.
St. Onge, the Director of the Finance department at the First Nations University of Canada, had to drive into town to help a student who needed a check signed under emergency circumstances. She was coming from her home located in Pense and heading towards the city of Regina.
As she was heading back home, the snowstorm hit sooner and much harder than expected. She decided to take the dirt roads as those tend to be better than the highways under extreme weather conditions. But when the wind picked up quickly and her visibility diminished, she became lost. When she was no longer able to see, she was forced to stop and park her car.
Video Credit: Shannon St. Onge/Facebook.com
With the storm not letting up, she started to think about her survival chances. Naturally, an array of horrible thoughts went through her mind: “Would the gas tank last until morning? What if I was hit by another vehicle? What if I fell asleep and the tailpipe was blocked? What if I didn't make it home at all?” [] She was afraid she would not survive.
Thinking about her kids at home and no end in sight of the storm, she called 911. The operator suggested that she should wait a little more for the snowstorm to settle down and noted down her information stating that an officer would shortly make a callback. She waited for the next 14 hours, but to her shock, nobody called.
Losing hope, she tried to figure out how to ensure her safety on her own. Not knowing where she was, she decided to pin her location on Google Maps and post it on her Facebook Community, asking if anyone knew where she was. Turns out she was in front of a farm, owned by the Bouviers, who her community members knew and reached out to for help.
Andre Bouvier Sr. to the Rescue
Mr. Bouvier, a retired rescuer, was busy doing some research studies on family genealogy at his home when he received a phone call regarding the unsettling situation of St. Onge. Going against the safety concerns of his wife, he courageously bundled up and went outside in search of the helpless lady.
What makes this old man a fearless hero was that he went out on foot to rescue her in the storm, without the help of any vehicle, as he was unable to start his tractor in the harsh weather.
While he was outside looking for St. Onge, to his shock, he bumped into three other stranded cars in the blizzard, which carried six other people who were as helpless as she was.
After discovering them, he managed to lead all seven people, one by one in their cars, towards the safety and warmth of his home.
Video Credit: Shannon St. Onge/Facebook.com
Bouvier and his wife graciously welcomed all 7 of them and immediately made them feel at home. They ended up sharing a comfortable night at his house, laughing and eating together, and departed to their final destinations the next morning.
The Calm After the Storm
Upon St. Onge’s safe return home, with a heart full of gratitude, she posted her recount of this event on Facebook, stating: “Just home now after the craziest 14-hour ordeal! I am so grateful for the kindness, love and humanity of others. Wow.” [] You can read Shannon St. Onge’s experience of that evening via her full Facebook post here
She also shared her sentiment on this valiant rescue with CBC News stating that upon her arrival at the old man's house, after being helpless in the harsh weather for more than 14 hours, she started sobbing with thankfulness and gratitude in her heart. She further explained that as soon as she got out of the car, she gave the old man a tight and big hug as she was so grateful for his kindness and compassion for humanity.
Shannon St. Onge is a hero for helping the other 6 people get located with her pin, and Bouvier indeed is being hailed as a hero for showing his courage! We are so happy to hear they all made it out of the storm and home safely.