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He was the paramedic who lived to save lives, and died while trying to save his true love.

Paul Rossington, 30, has been recommended for Australia’s highest bravery award after he jumped off Carnival Spirit in an attempt to save his girlfriend, 26-year-old Kristen Schroder, who fell from their cabin balcony back in 2013.

Just before 9pm on May 8, Kristen was seen climbing over the balcony’s railing, where she slipped and clung to the railing for about four seconds, eventually tumbling into the Tasman Sea, after which Paul was captured on security footage executing a “safety-type jump” into the water below.

Detective Sergeant Michael O’Keefe, the officer in charge of the case, said Paul’s bravery should be recognised with the Cross of Valour.

“He must have known that jumping out would most likely end with him losing his life,” he said.

Erika Mulligan, the advocate assisting the coroner, agrees, insisting he was acting on his instinct as a paramedic.

“He has not thought about his safety at all – that is certainly an act of bravery.”

On the evening in question, the couple were seen engaging in an intense discussion in the ship’s casino. The inquest findings will be handed down on June 29.

Neither Paul’s nor Kristen’s body was found.


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