Sunderland boys nominated for national award after saving man’s life

Heroic Sunderland schoolsboys Michael Purvis and James Mavin.
Heroic Sunderland schoolsboys Michael Purvis and James Mavin.
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HERO teenagers who saved the life of a man they found collapsed in the street have been nominated for a national award.

Michael Purvis and James Mavin, both 15, were on the bus heading home from school when they spotted the man lying in the street.

As reported in the Echo, the Castle View Enterprise Academy pupils demanded the driver stop before leaping off to rush to the rescue.

As shocked passers-by watched on helplessly, the boys quickly established the man was not breathing and had no heartbeat.

Both St John Ambulance cadets, the pals then carried out life-saving CPR, continuing to help the victim until paramedics arrived.

The lads’ bravery has now seen them shortlisted for the Guy Evans Award, a national St John’s Ambulance First Aid award for someone who saves a person’s life.

Michael, of Downhill, and James, of Town End Farm, today told how they were grateful for their training.

Michael said: “Luckily, our first aid training meant that we could help this man and be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.”

James added: “We’ve heard that two out of three people wouldn’t know what to do in an emergency, and that was obvious from all the people standing about but not doing anything.”

James who lives with parents Ronnie and Maria, and brother Aaron, added: “I remember feeling very proud that we’d made a difference. I ran home and told my mum. She didn’t believe me at first and thought I was joking.”

Michael and James joined St John Ambulance’s Sunderland Cadet Unit at the age of 10, and have been first aid volunteers at every Sunderland Airshow since 2007.

Janet Bridges, headteacher at Castle View Enterprise Academy, said: “The boys really are fantastic within the school and wider community as well as being great advocates for St John Ambulance.

“We’re extremely proud of them because if it hadn’t have been for their actions the man would have died.”

The Guy Evans award is in memory of Guy Evans, who died aged 17 following a moped crash which he may have survived with the help of basic first aid.

You can vote for Michael and James by visiting

“We’re rallying everyone to vote for them,” added Mrs Bridges.

“They’re not big-headed about it. They’re just really down-to-earth, good students.”