By: M. Gonçalves
On Saturday, the 24th of April, at around midnight, Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole was on his way home from work, when he jumped into River Thames to save a woman who had fallen. Known as "Jimi" by his family and friends, he entered the cold river with another man after witnessing a woman fall.
This young hero was walking past the river with his friends, who described him as “adamant to help”. During the night, Adewole and the other man, named Bernard, managed to save the woman and bring her to safety as they heard her screaming 'help, help, I am going to die,'.
The man that assisted Adewole with this heroic rescue was fortunate enough to leave the river with his life, Adewole, on the other hand, couldn’t be located by marine and coastguard units. The selfless 20-year-old lost his life and his body was found 6 hours later. One of Adewole’s acquaintances spoke on his courage, “The selflessness of this brave young man has cost him his life in trying to save the life of another…This is a tragic end to a life of promise — selflessly choosing to get involved in a situation many others would have chosen to ignore.”
Many tributes online have been taking place throughout the past week as people pay their respects to Jimi’s valiant actions in saving the woman. Under the #JimiTheHero, well over £60,000 have been raised for Adewole’s family to pay for his funeral. In the midst of what surely is a tragic time for this young man’s family, his father, Michael Adewole, spoke on his son’s bravery, “He was a very unique and angelic soul, and I am proud of him, so proud, and I want the world to know he was the most wonderful man. He is a hero, and always will be, I can’t bring him back, but I want him to be remembered forever for what he did, it was just like him to always try and help others." Continuing on his child’s noble actions, the 63-year-old father also spoke on how he believes his child deserves a medal for his bravery.
Amid this horrible tragedy, Adewole’s selflessness, heroism and valiance must be remembered. Jimi put the safety of a complete stranger ahead of his own and lost his life for someone he didn’t even know, for this, he mustn’t be forgotten.