A Swansea youngster is to lead the Ospreys out onto the Liberty Stadium turf next weekend as a reward for the quick thinking actions that saved his grandmother from choking.
10 year-old Ryan Rees from Waunarlwydd leapt into action when gran Marlene Rogers began to choke on a tablet during his regular Saturday afternoon visit to her home, utilising the life saving skills he learnt at a St John Cymru Wales course in Waunarlwydd Primary School. After failing to dislodge the pill by slapping her on her back, he performed a number of abdominal thrusts, part of the Heimlich manoeuvre, and managed to clear her airway.
Cerebral Palsy sufferer Ryan has already been honoured by St John Cymru Wales, picking up the Young Lifesaver of the Year Award at a ceremony in Cardiff earlier this month, and now, his favourite rugby team have offered him the chance to be their mascot for the day when they take on London Irish in a vital EDF Energy Cup clash at the Liberty Stadium on November 4th.
Ryan's parents, grandparents, brother and sister will join him at the Liberty Stadium for the match, where they will be the Ospreys guests for the afternoon.
Ospreys Managing Director Roger Blyth commented:
"â¬ÅWe are delighted to be able to reward Ryan by inviting him to act as our mascot for such a crucial game, and we are sure that he will be thrilled to not only meet all his favourite players but to also lead us out onto the pitch before the match. He should be very proud of what he did, to keep his cool and put into practice everything he had learnt in school in an emergency situation like that is a remarkable achievement for such a young boy and asking him to join us at the London Irish game is the least we could do.
"â¬ÅHis experience shows the importance of learning basic lifesaving techniques, and whilst it is a skill that we would all hope we never have to use, Ryan has shown that it is best to be prepared. His gran, and the rest of his family, will be watching on from the stand with pride as he carries out his mascot duties, and I'm sure that he will receive a good ovation from our supporters as well."â¬Â
Ospreys skipper Ryan Jones also paid tribute to the youngster:
"â¬ÅWhen I read Ryan's story in the Evening Post I couldn't help but be impressed and I know that the rest of the squad feel the same way. While he may be excited about coming to the game and meeting us, we are all looking forward to meeting him.
"â¬ÅSpeaking on behalf of all the squad, it will be good to be able to shake his hand and say "â¬Ëwell done' to him. Everyone at the Ospreys will consider it a real honour to be led out onto the pitch by a genuine hero, who at just 10 years old has achieved something that everybody will be in awe of."â¬Â