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Canada's industry minister says he hopes a tweeted tale about a dramatic rescue outside his cottage-country area home Saturday will serve as a lesson in water safety.
Tony Clement was having dinner with his wife, Lynne Golding, and in-laws when they heard a "hammering at our door," the Parry Sound-Muskoka MP said in an interview Sunday.
"I answered the door and this young woman — 19, 20 or so — was just screaming hysterically that her friend was in the water and she was drowning," said Clement, who lives in Port Sydney, about 20 kilometres southwest of Huntsville.
The cabinet minister ran outside to a dam leading to Mary Lake, a tourist spot for those who enjoy shooting rapids and sunbathing on the rocks, he said.
"Lynne and her father grabbed the life jackets. When I got there, I could see the woman, the swimmer in the water about 150 yards downstream and I could just see her head and she wasn't moving, so that really concerned me obviously," he said. "I had a t-shirt and shorts on and sandals and I just dove in and started swimming towards her and tried to catch her while Lynne and her father ran along the shoreline downstream to try to head her off."
As the undertow pulled on Clement, the MP began to tire and had to make a 90-degree turn towards the shoreline where he continued towards the young woman, who had figured out how to float on her back, he said.