Friday 22 September 2017

Irish hero pulls two people from collapsed building

Paddy McGowan was hailed
a hero for his actions in the
aftermath of the
earthquake in Christchurch
yesterday
Paddy McGowan was hailed a hero for his actions in the aftermath of the earthquake in Christchurch yesterday
Rescue workers search for survivors at the collapsed CTV building in the city
A man is seen being pulled from the rubble after the earthquake in Christchurch yesterday

Anita Guidera and Luke Byrne

AN Irishman was being hailed as a hero yesterday after pulling two people from a collapsed building following the earthquake in New Zealand.

Construction worker Paddy McGowan (26), from Killygordon, Co Donegal, was in an internet cafe in the centre of Christchurch when the earthquake struck. He described the scene as akin to the movie 'Independence Day', as pavements started moving up from the road and drains started sinking.

The experienced lifeguard said he ran to the aid of people trapped beneath rubble in a nearby shop, pulling a woman and man on to the street.

"We pulled the man out. He was unconscious. We kept doing CPR on him but the guy had passed away," he said yesterday.

Minutes later, he alerted police to the smell of gas and remained at the scene, preventing people from going down the street until police closed it off.

Mr McGowan said he had only been in New Zealand a month. His proud father, Donegal councillor Patrick McGowan Snr, told the Irish Independent he was delighted and relieved that his son was okay.

Meanwhile, Dublin-born mother-of-two Natasha Massey (41) described how she had to escape from her house. "We had to run for our lives to open ground," she said.

Irish Independent

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