A TEENAGE hero will carry the Olympic torch as a reward for his bravery.
James Mavin, 16, and his friend Michael Purvis, saved a man’s life on their way home from school in Sunderland.
The Castle View Academy pupils told their bus driver to pull over when they saw the man collapse in the street.
The pair, who are St John Ambulance cadets, performed life-saving CPR on the man, who was not breathing.
Now James, of Town End Farm, has been chosen from a long list of nominations to carry the Olympic torch through the North East streets. He will take the famous flame through Whitley Bay on June 15.
He said: “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I’m not really a sporty person but I’m happy to do this.”
James’ proud mum Maria says the family will be out in force to watch him.
She said: “I’m taking time off work. My husband is taking time off work. His nan and grandad are coming down too. I’m really proud of him.”
However, James is sad that Michael will not be able to share the honour due to a mix-up with paperwork.
“He’s a bit disappointed that his friend has missed out on it,” said Maria.
In December, the Echo reported how James and Michael were honoured at the St John Ambulance awards in London, when they were presented with the Guy Evans Award by The Countess of Wessex and newsreader Sophie Rayworth.
St John Ambulance’s chief executive Sue Killen described as “inspirational” the actions of James and Michael.
Recalling the incident, James said: “We got off the bus and saw him collapsed. When we got up to him, we could see he wasn’t breathing so we had to administer CPR.”
Paramedics later told the Echo that but for the boys’ actions, the man would have died.
James will be sitting his GCSE exams this summer and is hoping to to pursue a career as a paramedic.