Canadian tourist nabs purse-snatcher in Chicago

A pedestrian walks up Chicago's Magnificent Mile in Chicago in this May 19, 2012 file photo....

A pedestrian walks up Chicago's Magnificent Mile in Chicago in this May 19, 2012 file photo. (REUTERS/Frank Polich)

Melanie Anderson, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:39 AM ET

LONDON, Ont. -- One tweet about London firefighter Gary Martin -- one of many -- said it all.

"Have spent time in Canada. Nicest folks to meet. Apparently a hero visited Chicago. Good on ya, eh :-)," said Daniel McNeil of suburban Chicago.

Flattering tweets, a headline in the Windy City's most famous newspaper, the Chicago Tribune, and feel-good echoes back across the border.

You can bet Martin wasn't banking on all that attention when he visited the continent's third-largest city for the first time this week.

Then, again, it's not every foreign tourist who'd chase down a purse-snatcher in a strange city.

That he did so near Chicago's legendary Magnificent Mile, a shopping mecca apparently dealing with a purse-snatching problem, elevated Martin to heroic status on his trip to the Midwest capital.

Tuesday, the 47-year-old chased down a man and pinned him to the ground after he stole an elderly woman's purse on North Michigan Ave.


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