British grandfather, 61, is killed trying to save his grandsons, seven and ten, in the sea off Crete

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British grandfather, 61, is killed saving his grandsons, seven and ten, after they got caught in strong currents while swimming on holiday in Crete

  • Grandfather, 61, jumped into the sea after seeing his boys struggling in currents
  • But he became trapped against rocks off the coastal town of Gouves
  • Lifeguard rushed in to save the children but could not reach the man in time
  • He was later able to free the grandfather’s lifeless body from the rocks 


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A British grandfather has died trying to save his two grandsons after they were swept out to sea while swimming on holiday in Crete.

The 61-year-old leapt into the water when the boys, aged seven and ten, got into trouble in the waves but he soon became trapped against rocks by strong currents. 

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A lifeguard managed to save the children but he could not free the elderly man from the rocks and only when the coast guard arrived could his body be brought ashore. 

‘At least the grandfather managed to see his grandchildren safe on land,’ one witness told local broadcaster Crete TV following the tragedy. 

The grandfather was minding the children when they went for a swim off the coastal village of Gouves, on the north of the Greek island, on Tuesday afternoon. 

The grandfather was minding the children when they went for an afternoon swim off the coastal village of Gouves (pictured), on the north of the Greek island, on Tuesday afternoon.

The grandfather was minding the children when they went for an afternoon swim off the coastal village of Gouves (pictured), on the north of the Greek island, on Tuesday afternoon.

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He jumped into the water when he saw the boys getting into trouble in strong waves but he rapidly got into trouble himself as he was swept against the rocks. 

A lifeguard rushed down to get the children out of the water but was unable to save the grandfather due to the strength of the currents, Greek broadcaster Skai reported.

Eventually the coast guard managed to free the man’s body and transferred him to a nearby boat before he was rushed ashore to a waiting ambulance.

A witness working nearby who went to help told Cretapost: ‘We were trying to pull him out but the currents were too strong and we couldn’t.

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‘With the help of the Coast Guard, the man’s body was eventually retrieved and taken to the boat.’

The children were also taken to hospital in a state of shock but were not reported to have suffered any injury. 

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