CORNWALL, Ontario – On Aug. 27, 2017, Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) Meghan McRae and her mom Allison witnessed a two-vehicle collision on Hwy. 138 in South Stormont just south of Monkland.
“My mom looked and me and said ‘wow, should we pull over,’” explained McRae. “I looked and saw that emergency responders weren’t on the scene yet and said I’m a nurse and I should do what I can to help until the paramedics get there.”
McRae found the two vehicles had collided head-on. The first vehicle had a single passenger, a female from Quebec, and the second vehicle had a man and a woman. McRae said that the man and woman from the second vehicle were up and moving around, and that apart from some scraps, they seemed okay.
McRae went to attend to the woman in the first vehicle, who she found crying and hyperventilating. She asked the woman if she was in pain and the woman explained that she had pain down her back and felt that she could not move.
“I spoke to her in a calming voice and told her that help was on its way,” said McRae. “I told her that I would stay with her and that I would make sure someone was there for her when she got to the hospital. I asked her to go through her cell phone and contact her family.”
McRae eventually did reach a friend who promised to meet the woman at the hospital.
“When the ambulance got there her state of mind was completely different,” she said. “She was in shock at first.”
On Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, McRae was recognized with the Commissioner’s Citation for Lifesaving from O.P.P. Commissioner Vincent Hawkes. The award states that she was recognized for her efforts to “keep their condition from deteriorating with the onset of shock.” McRae was also given a Lifesaving Certificate from St. John Ambulance.
McRae explained that it was nice to be recognized, but that what she did was about helping others.
“To get that type of recognition was really nice,” she said. “I didn’t expect that and didn’t do it to get an award.”
McRae is an RPN at Glen Stor Dun Lodge in Cornwall and also works in an naturopath’s office.