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Reflecting on Ron MacLean’s Good Samaritan moment

In case you missed yesterday’s news, CBC personality Ron MacLean helped save a man from drowning (our own Joe Yerdon shared his thoughts/jokes here). The initial mental image is a little misleading, or at least it was in my head, as I imagined some Superman scenario in which MacLean did it all by himself ... on his lunch break or something. Instead, he was part of a group of people who retrieved a man (rumored to be attempting suicide) from the Delaware River.

Whatever way you slice it, the story is compelling and odd, but also with precedent.

Whenever I hear about a celebrity (or quasi-celebrity) saving a “normal” person’s life, I immediately think of the time former Terrell Owens agent Drew Rosenhaus saved a drowning boy at Disney World.

Rosenhaus, whose hardball negotiating tactics have made him perhaps the league’s most notorious agent, said he was at the Grand Floridian to visit clients and ran to help when he heard screaming after the boy was pulled from the pool.

“I dropped my phone, which is pretty rare,” joked Rosenhaus, who worked as a lifeguard as a youngster. “I was thrilled to help the boy. It was nice to be a good guy for once.”

These stories usually fill me with an odd mixture of conflicting emotions. After reading of these heroics, am I evil for mocking the world’s Rosenhaus types? Perhaps, instead, I’m evil for occasionally wondering if the story was fake altogether. Then I wonder if maybe the bad person mark is hit simply because I haven’t saved anyone’s life.

Hat’s off to MacLean, either way. It’s great to see a big fancy media type get his (or her) hands dirty when everything’s on the line. After all, does it get more “clutch” than helping to save someone’s life?