'I just jumped right in' - Meath teenager saves two young boys from river


Jack Quann
Jack Quann

14.59 13 Aug 2020


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A teenager from Navan is being hailed a hero, after he saved two boys who were stuck in a river.

Sixteen-year-old Callum Keane was out for a walk with his girlfriend along the River Boyne on Wednesday, when they heard cries for help.

He told Lunchtime Live: "We heard a little boy screaming for help - and my first reaction was to jump in to get the boy, to see if I could save him.

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"Luckily I just jumped right in, swam over to him, picked him up over my shoulder and brought him over to the bank.

"I had to try find a way in - cause there's reeds all along the bank - so I had to find a gap to bring him in, and I had to push against the currents."

Callum said a second boy was stuck in the reeds.

"He was just trying to get out to his mate to get him, but he got stuck in the reeds.

"So then with the other boy on my shoulder I had to flatten down reeds and push them away to try free the other boy to get him out as well."

He said the water was about eight or nine foot deep, but added: "Getting to him wasn't that hard, cause I was going with the current down towards him.

"But on the way back... I had to go against the current with him on my shoulder as well, it was hard."

"He was in shock, he was shaking, he was crying and he was just really scared - but once I got him on to land he was grand [and] real thankful for what I'd done"

"I'm a strong enough swimmer - my first instinct was just to jump in to make sure I could get to the boy as soon as possible [to] make sure he's OK.

"My main focus was to get to him and bring him to shore - apart from that I wasn't really thinking about anything else."

"The minute I got out of the water, Christopher Rennicks of Meath River Rescue was already on the scene and he had the emergency services all contacted.

"The Guards were already there, they came with him, and the ambulances and fire brigade - the whole lot - they all were close behind.

"It wasn't till I got home that night when I was going to bed it kind of hit me, and today again, it's just kind of mad to think what could have been."

"The reaction's been mad, the amount of messages I'm getting from everyone and all the interviews and that - I wasn't expecting the half of it, it's insane".

'I just jumped right in' - Meath teenager saves two young boys from river

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Callum's father, Francis, said they have been getting well-wishes from everyone.

"He just came in and told us what happened and he was just very calm - I don't think I'd be myself.

"But we're just very proud of him and just what he's done, and just took it all in his stride."

"It's definitely not a place for kids, especially that part of the river, as Callum said it was very dense there with the reeds and stuff where the kids were.

"So just to definitely keep well away from there".

"A lot of friends and family that have contacted us, and text us and Facebook and everything - they're all delighted for him".

"I'm delighted for him now, to be honest with you".

Main image: Hero teenager Callum Keane. Picture: Supplied

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