Dramatic rescue | 

Hero who dragged drowning teen to safety says if he hadn't delayed going home ‘the kid was dead’

John Timlin sprang to the rescue at Fermoyle beach on the same day brother and sister Dessie Byrne and Muriel Eriksson drowned just along the coast at Ballybunion

John Timlin

John Timlin

Gerry HandSunday World

The hero who dramatically dragged a drowning teenager to safety on a Kerry beach the same day that a brother and sister were drowned less than 40 miles away has told the Sunday World, 'If I hadn't delayed going home in order to answer a few emails the kid was dead.'

John Timlin who runs brandonadventures.com in Fermoyle county Kerry sprang to the rescue when he was alerted to the struggles of fifteen year old girl in the water off Fermoyle beach last Thursday week, the same day brother and sister Dessie Byrne and Muriel Eriksson drowned just along the coast at Ballybunion.

John Timlin

He revealed, 'I run a mobile surfing school and had finished for the day about twenty minutes earlier but instead of heading straight home I sat down and checked my emails.

'The next thing a guy knocked on the door of my van and told me there was a girl in trouble in the sea.

'I got out and her two friends were on the beach but one of them was screaming hysterically while the other one appeared to be out cold and I struggled to understand them for a moment.

'They kept saying their friend was out there but when I asked where they could only point to the sea and from the beach I couldn't see anyone at all.

'They had been jumping over waves and just having fun but there was a big swell that day and they were caught out.

'Her two pals got back but she didn't manage it,

'When I got on the surfboard and headed out for a closer look I spotted her straight away and for a horrible moment I was sure she was dead.

'The reason I thought that was she wasn't moving at all, I have been a lifeguard and know from experience when a person is in trouble they are usually thrashing around but she was completely still.

'I turned the board over draped her arm around it and paddled it back in, now I am far from a hero I just done what I was trained to do but I am certain, 100% certain if I had gone home when I should have she was dead.

'There was nobody else on that beach at that moment with the experience needed to save her. She spent a few nights in hospital but she is home safe now and that is the main thing.'


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