Two students from Castleisland secondary schools fell easily into the roles of hero and heroine on Tuesday when they rescued a local woman and her baby from the River Maine beside Herbert Bridge on the Killarney Road.
Shay Walsh, Scartaglin and his girlfriend Alison Jones from Ballymacelligott were strolling along the river walk at lunchtime on Tuesday when they heard the woman’s cries for help.
Knee Deep in Water
She was in the river and knee deep in water and was trying to rescue her baby from its buggy which had slipped in off the bank and got lodged in the river.
The frantic woman also had another child on the river walk. It was while she was attending to this child that the buggy and the baby slid off the walk and down the steep river-bank and into the river.
“We just heard the woman screaming for help and we scrambled down the bank of the river and I was able to get the baby out and pull the buggy from the river. I passed the baby to Alison and she took it to safety,” said Shay.
Great-Grandmother Passed Away at Same Time
“It was strange as I learned afterwards that it was at this very same time of the day that my great-grandmother, Mary Quilter passed away. We went down that way on that day for a purpose and I’m sure she sent us down there for that very reason,” said Shay.
After their ordeal the two students returned to their respective schools, Alison to St. Joseph’s Girls’ and Shay to St. Patrick’s Boys’ just on time.
Daunting Lunchtime Experience
I asked Shay how did they explain the fact that their clothes were wet and he replied: “We didn’t.”
Mother and baby are believed to be recovering and the baby was detained in hospital overnight as a precaution.
It was a daunting experience for the students who both rose to the challenge presented to them and made light of their heroic, lunch-time good deeds afterwards.
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