Alexis Edall, nine, was recognized for saving a young toddler’s life by YMCA senior aquatic manager Randall Wight, Wednesday at the H2O Adventure + Fitness Centre. - Credit: Carli Berry/ Capital News

Nine-year-old swimmer recognized for life-saving feat

Alexis Edall saved a toddler from drowning in Kelowna earlier this month

It’s not easy to make the snap decision to save someone’s life.

But for nine-year-old Alexis Edall, she didn’t think twice.

She didn’t hesitate when she saw a toddler had fallen in a backyard pool and dove in to save her.

On Wednesday, July 26, she received an award of recognition for using the skills she recently learned in the YMCA spring break aquatic seal camp to save the toddler’s life.

“When I was six years old, I just wanted to get better at swimming,” she said, when asked why she decided to start swimming lessons. “I’m good at swimming but I can always get better.”

Her favourite position is the front stroke and she keeps the idea of becoming a lifeguard in the back of her mind.

“It’s not often you hear about children saving other children, which is what makes Alexis so special,” said Robyn MacNeill aquatic manager for YMCA Central Okanagan.

Teaching kids how to swim is important, especially at a young age.

“We’re here in the Okanagan and we’re surrounded by water everywhere we go,” said MacNeill. “Kids are exposed to the water all the time so it’s important that they’re able to save themselves and others.”

Free swimming lessons are provided to all Grade 3 and 4 students in School District #23.

“They come for three weeks for an hour each week and learn live-saving skills so through this program we can drown proof the Okanagan,” said MacNeill.

The program has been running for five years.