RCAF humble heroes in Kingston fire rescue

Sgt. Cory Cisyk lowers from a CH-146 Griffon helicopter as RCAF 424 Squadron rescues a crane worker...

Sgt. Cory Cisyk lowers from a CH-146 Griffon helicopter as RCAF 424 Squadron rescues a crane worker as a fire rages below in downtown Kingston on Tuesday, December 17 2013. (IAN MACALPINE/KINGSTON WHIG-STANDARD/QMI AGENCY)

Joe Warmington, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:29 AM ET

TORONTO -- As heroes go, Canada's 424 Tiger Squadron were already legendary for being as brave as they come.

They've now added another chapter to their already incredible story, which includes action in the English Channel in the Second World War.

This time, their battle was trying to save a man from the top of a crane as a fire burned below.

As he was being lowered from the Griffon helicopter to a man stuck on a crane, the heroic Royal Canadian Air Force search-and-rescue technician was not awestruck about what was unfolding on the ground.

"I was just zeroing in on the man at the end of the crane," Sgt. Cory Cisyk told QMI Agency Tuesday night. "I was told later about everything below, but I really needed to focus on him."

No one in Kingston, Ont., will soon forget the day the search-and-rescue 424 Tiger Squadron whirled into town from their home base at CFB Trenton.

Certainly not that crane operator, who was hanging on for his dear life 180 feet above the ground as a fire ravaged his downtown construction site below.

"He is lucky to be alive," said local Tony Rogers, who, like much of the city, looked on as the lone crane worker's life dangled while a major fire smoked out several city blocks. "One wrong move here or there and who knows?"

A firefighter had come in to his Rogers Towing and Crane Service looking for some way to go up and rescue the stranded man.

"My crane only goes up 114 feet, and they needed 180," said Tony. "We were really worried about him."


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