The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Toronto Daily Star (Toronto, ON), Sat. Sept. 17, 1949

Full Text
Heard cries of women dashed into inferno fear young hero lost
by Frank Teskey

A heroic pedestrian, who rushed aboard the Noronic to assist in the rescue, may have lost his life in the burning hull of the passenger ship

This was revealed today, as Andre Cinq-Mars, 18, of 13 st Gerald St. St. Josaphat Montreal, a show-worker from the CNE, kept a constant vigil at the waterfront beside the smouldering ruins in Toronto harbor.

He had searched in vain for his pal, Andre Charron, 22 of 2951 Sagar St. Montreal, whom he last saw dashing up the gangplank into the inferno in response to cries for help from women trapped on the rails several decks above.

Was Like That

"He didn’t stop for anything- when he saw someone in trouble- he was like that,: Cinq Mars said as hope that the hero would return alive faded as the hours wore on.

"We were walking along the street when I recognized a long blast of the whistle of a ship in distress. Minutes later flames shot from the Noronic near the stern and we ran toward it.

"It was a nightmare. There were people in the water hanging on ropes and a lot more screaming from behind a cloud of smoke. I helped an elderly woman and a couple of men to the dock but it was simply impossible to reach the people almost enveloped in flames.

But Andre Charron couldn’t stand there and watch that suffering without doing something about it and he dashed into what looked like certain death.

"I’ve got to get those people." he told me as he took off on the run, into the flames."

Cinq-Mars assisted two women and a man from the ship and took them to a building across the road. "When I came back,: he said, "there was fire everywhere on ship and no sign of Andre or the people he went to help."

Cries Demanded Action

Cinq-Mars said there may have been others who were passing the area and went on the blazing ship to help. "Those cries for help demanded action-no man could turn away without making a good try I did what I could but my pal had more courage than I.

It’s seven hours since Andre went on there-I guess he’s had it." Cinq-Mars said with a tearful look at the wreckage.

"We were here before the police or firemen and when the police guards were set up I had to stand outside the fence. We both have the same first names and Andre and I had been pals for a year. He was supposed to start in the Cortess show tomorrow, driving to California."

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Sat. Sept. 17, 1949
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Randy Johnson
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Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Toronto Daily Star (Toronto, ON), Sat. Sept. 17, 1949