Thursday, September 18, 2014
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Cross Lake girl honoured for risking her life

Winnipeg Free Press

At only 10 years old, Kina Raven Beardy proved she was no coward.

Now a young teenager, the Cross Lake Cree heroine posed with Gov. Gen. David Johnston at Rideau Hall Thursday when her act of bravery was publicly honoured.

Kina was one of the recipients of the Medal of Bravery, which recognizes acts of bravery in hazardous circumstances.

The teen, dressed in a glamourous turquoise ball gown, posed demurely for the camera in Ottawa with the Governor General. The stance she took four years ago, the one which earned her national recognition, was far different.

On July 8, 2010, Kina risked her life to protect a woman who was being attacked by two other women in Cross Lake. The community is the centre of the Pimicikamak Cree First Nation, located 530 kilometres north of Winnipeg.

A tiny girl, Kina didn’t hesitate to physically shield the victim in an effort to protect her. Her actions forced the assailants to stop their attack.

Thanks to Kina’s efforts, the victim managed to seek shelter at a neighbour’s house.

Kina was among four Manitobans to be honoured with medals of bravery at the Rideau Hall ceremony.

Sgt. Paul Charles Avanthay of Little Grand Rapids and Const. Norbert Alexander Constant of The Pas and Ashern were honoured for saving a woman who was trying to harm herself.

On Oct. 28, 2009, Avanthay and Constant rescued a suicidal woman who had jumped from a hydro dam into the Winnipeg River in Powerview. Both men entered the freezing water and, wading against the powerful current, brought the woman to shore.

Adrien Grenier of Altamont rescued his brothers from a house fire.

On Oct. 10, 2011, Grenier helped his three brothers escape from their burning house. With the main floor filled with fire and smoke, Grenier helped his brothers climb down a small, pitched roof to safety.

The Governor General presented a total of 42 medals of bravery one star of courage during today's ceremony.

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