A man visiting from Alberta gave his life to save a young girl in the Kootenays.
Jon Palmiere – “a terrific, terrific guy” – saved a child at Lake Windermere on Friday.
Kiel Jordan said Palmiere, of Calgary, was enjoying a day at Windermere Beach with Jordan’s girls and other family.
Jordon’s 10-year-old daughter Payton ran into trouble.
“My daughter got a little too far out on the water on her floaty, and was trying to make it back, and she started calling for help, needing some help, and then her head started bobbing underneath the water,” recalled Jordan.
“And so Jon, without hesitation, ran into the lake and tried to help her get back. He wasn’t a strong swimmer at all, but he just went for it.
“His head started going under trying to keep her up, and then he slipped under the water.
“His last go was to grab her feet, (and he) somehow threw her up out of the water towards the beach, which got her within arm’s reach of other people that helped bring my daughter back onto the beach. And then he went under the water.”
People on the beach rushed to save Palmiere. They brought him to shore on a paddleboard, gave him chest compressions and called for help. He died in hospital.
“He’s just the most kind and caring person in the world, and anybody who came into contact with him absolutely loved him. You couldn’t make a nicer human. It was just who he was,” Jordan said.
Payton was returned safely to shore and is in counselling to help process what she witnessed.
“Physically she’s fine. He kept her above. She bobbed a few times before he got there, but he kept her above,” Jordan said.