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B.C. man saves four in Tofino float plane crash, six years after Leviathan II rescue

Click to play video: 'Man helps rescue four people from sinking floatplane in Tofino' Man helps rescue four people from sinking floatplane in Tofino
We are hearing from the man who rescued four people from a sinking floatplane that crashed in the waters off Tofino this week, and as Paul Johnson reports - this isn't the first time that the Ahousaht fisherman has jumped into action to save others – Oct 21, 2021

Ken Brown was at the First Street dock in Tofino, B.C. on Monday afternoon when he saw a floatplane crash into a water taxi.

The Ahousaht man untied his own water taxi and rushed to the site of the collision.

Click to play video: 'Rescuers involved in Tofino disaster honoured' Rescuers involved in Tofino disaster honoured
Rescuers involved in Tofino disaster honoured – Mar 5, 2016

As he approached the plane, it started to sink forward. A door to the plane opened and a young boy appeared.

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“I extend my hand out and then I tell this little boy, ‘OK, you’ve got to come towards me.’ So he comes towards me. I get him aboard and he’s shivering,” he said.

Brown then helped the boy’s father and two other passengers onto his boat and brought them ashore.

Read more: 5 sent to hospital after floatplane flips into waters off Tofino, B.C.

The pilot of the plane was also brought safely to shore.

The crash was the second in waters off Tofino in four months. In July, a floatplane flipped and crashed, sending five people to hospital.

Days after the collision, Brown says he’s still trying to process what took place.

“The young boy that was on the plane, I have a son about the same age,” he said. “I’m still stunned, just speechless over it.”

Read more: First Nations among rescuers credited with saving lives after boat sinks off B.C. coast

Nearly six years to the day of Monday’s rescue, Brown helped rescue passengers of a whale-watching boat that capsized near Tofino in 2015.

Brown was among the first on the scene when the Leviathan II flipped over, sending 27 passengers and crew into the water.

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Click to play video: 'Survivor of Leviathan 2 sinking thanks rescuers with a new park' Survivor of Leviathan 2 sinking thanks rescuers with a new park
Survivor of Leviathan 2 sinking thanks rescuers with a new park – Oct 24, 2016

Six people were killed by the accident and the fast effort was credited for saving the other 21 passengers on board.

Brown said he helped save 13 people on the Leviathan II, along with the four in Monday’s collision.

He says he is grateful for the praise he’s received from his community, but he is not entirely comfortable being called a hero – with one notable exception.

“I soak it in when my kids call me a hero,” he said. ” I’ll hug them and say, ‘Yeah, your dad’s a hero.'”

— with files from The Canadian Press

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