A Calgary businessman paid roughly $750,000 to help free kidnapped journalist Amanda Lindhout in Somalia.
Allan Markin, a co-owner of the NHL’s Calgary Flames, explained he didn’t know Lindhout when she was taken hostage in 2008, but he believes in helping people and that is why he paid the ransom.
“I was just glad that she survived,” said Markin. “I think she’s an honourable person and full of integrity… She’s an inspiration for hope for a lot of people.”
Lindhout and Markin both spoke at a fundraiser last weekend for the Mustard Seed charity, and she surprised Markin by divulging to the crowd that he had saved her life. Lindhout had not publicly revealed before who paid the ransom for her release.
Lindhout was working as a freelance journalist when she and her photographer were taken by armed men. They were freed after being held hostage for 15 months.
In her best-selling book “A House in the Sky,” co-authored by Sara Corbett, Lindhout revealed $1.2 million was spent to free her and Brennan.
After Lindhout returned to Canada, Markin said he also helped pay for her to complete a diploma in international studies at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia.