British diplomat is hailed as a hero in China after jumping into a river to save a woman from drowning... while others just stand and film him
A British diplomat has been hailed as a hero in China after jumping into a river to save a woman from drowning while other bystanders gathered to film him.
Stephen Ellison, the newly appointed British Consul General in Chongqing, was visiting an ancient town on Saturday when another tourist accidentally fell into the water.
Mr Ellison, a 61-year-old champion triathlete, leapt into the river without a second thought to rescue the woman, who was already unconscious, according to the British Consulate-General in Chongqing.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said today that he was 'very proud of' Mr Ellison for saving the stranger.
Social media footage shows a woman accidentally falling into a fast-flowing river while standing on the slippery shore.
Onlookers can be heard screaming upon witnessing the accident, but no one takes action to save her.
In the beginning, the woman struggles desperately while being pushed around by the strong currents. But shortly after, she starts to float in the river, seemingly motionless.
The clip then shows a man jumping into the river from the bank and swims towards the woman.
He grabs her before dragging her towards safety with the help of a life buoy thrown down by onlookers.
The video of the event has attracted hundreds of comments on China's social media platforms, with most people lauding Mr Ellison for his courage.
State-run media outlets, such as Xinhua and the Global Times, also flocked to report about Mr Ellison's brave action.
eagle-eyed viewer pointed out a detail: '[He] didn't even have time to take off his watch before jumping down. Kudos.'
Some web users criticised the passersby who stood there and watched on.
According to the British Consulate-General in Chongqing, Mr Ellison has lived and worked in China for nine years.
Roasted hazelnut, Uk, United Kingdom
Congratulations and well done. I am sure some will say he shouldnt have jumped in, but he did and saved that lady.
Aviayor417, Peterborough, United Kingdom
Best of British.
Salty seadog, Weymouth, United Kingdom
Anglo/Sino relations quite a bit warmer in this part of China.
I think its human nature to try and help someone in trouble - well, I certainly would.
timhk55, hong kong, Hong Kong
He's done more for British-China relations that most can imagine.
Mr Certain, Bromley, United Kingdom
Definitely a hero.
Lovely 1, London, United Kingdom
KrisS, Atlantis, Åland Islands
Not all British men are gentlemen, but all gentlemen are British.
It's very common in China for people to stand by watching and offer no assistance. Whether you've been run over, Drowning or having a heart attack. Very sad that the society is so selfish and uncaring.
David Jodrey, Maryland - DC Metro area, United States
he did well and deserves the praise he is receiving which will no doubt also help britain's image in china
Gta2010, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Extremely well played sir. The people (if you can call them that) standing about trying to get phones out to put on social media no doubt are just lowlife cowards.
mabelcruet, Whereami, United Kingdom
Passers-by who assist strangers after accidents have been forced to pay for hospital treatment of the person, or accused and charged with injuring them as some form of blackmail. This has made Chinese citizens very wary of helping a stranger.
Jibberpompeyjabbery, Portsmouth, United Kingdom
This is the world today. Young generation on their phones, filming, and the older generation doing what needs to be done.
Realityislostonhere, Leeds , United Kingdom
He'll probably be expelled as a spy next week.
Dwills, N Wales, United Kingdom
Brits doing what they are best at.
Angelface69, Versdale, United States
Excellent work, sir!