A CBC crew whose van slid into a ditch in Arnprior, Ontario was rescued by a truck driver participating in the Freedom Convoy.
A parliamentary reporter with the state broadcaster had headed to the town about 70km west of Ottawa to gather footage of remaining convoy trucks parked there. When the crew’s van reportedly went into a nearby ditch, trucker Tyson Gareau used a chain to pull it out with his Ford pickup.
“A demonstrator named Tyson Garneau (sic) wearing a ‘defund the CBC’ hat pulled us out knowing we were CBC journalists,” said CBC reporter Ashley Burke in a tweet on Wednesday. “He said he’d never leave anyone stuck like that.”
Burke spoke to Gareau on the scene and reported that he had been sleeping in the back of his truck during the Freedom Convoy and had just arrived at the Arnprior camp earlier in the day. Burke also reported Gareau had lost his job as a truck driver and had been protesting because he wanted freedom for his grandkids.
She added that a female trucker at the gate of the protester camp was friendly but refused to allow the CBC inside, saying that her crew was trying to care for other protesters on the site.
The rescue occurred even while Burke’s CBC colleague David Thurton back in Ottawa was asking Trudeau whether he still saw the protest camps outside the city as a threat.
Trudeau, who had just announced he was revoking his implementation of the Emergencies Act answered, “the threat continues.”
Christian Heritage Party leader Rod Taylor said that Gareau’s rescue of the stranded CBC reporter embodies human decency.
“Canada is in the ditch right now,” said Taylor. “We need to all work together to get back on the road.”
Alberta premier Jason Kenney also praised Gareau for helping out the state broadcaster.
“For all of the differences we have in this country, a little bit of old fashioned Canadian kindness goes a long way,” said Kenney. “I nominate this for a new Canadian Heritage Minute!”
Freedom Convoy organizer Tom Marazzo had called for protesters to withdraw from Ottawa on Saturday to avoid being targeted by police action.
Marazzo said at a press conference that it was time for protesters to leave Ottawa to avoid further harm.
“There isn’t anything to be gained by being brutalized by police,” said Marazzo.