A Sikh man is being hailed as a hero in Canada after he saved a teenage girl from drowning by using his turban to pull her out of a frigid river. Avtar Hothi, a 65-year-old farmer from Kamloops, British Columbia, used his turban to save the teen who had fallen into the cold waters of North Thompson River close to his farm. Hothi and his son Paul were working at their family farm in Heffley Creek, just north of Kamloops, last Saturday when they heard cries for help. They rushed to the riverbank to see a young woman struggling to stay afloat in the strong current. "I'm very proud of him," Paul said referring to his father.
His father then drove the girl back to her grandmother's house a few minutes from their farm. "We used his turban as a rope because it would have been a lot harder just to pull someone up off shore," Paul told The Canadian Press.
He said someone brought a blanket and the frightened woman was calmed down and returned safely to relatives in a nearby home. Sikh men consider it improper to show their hair in public, but Paul stated that those rules do not apply if it is a case of life and death.
In a country where awareness and acceptance of Sikhs has happened in the last few years and they are now welcomed with open arms, this is yet another feather in the hat of achievements for them.