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'I was terrified' - Garda heroes rescue Dublin woman after dog drags her into river

The gardaí, as well as passer-bys Alan and Evan, were rewarded certs of recognition today for their bravery

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Ann Lam was saved from drowning in a Clondalkin park

Ann Lam was saved from drowning in a Clondalkin park

Ann Lam was saved from drowning in a Clondalkin park

A Dublin woman has said she is lucky to be alive after she fell into a river while walking her dog.

Ann Lam (55) suffered a terrifying fall into the River Camac in Knockmitten Park, in Clondalkin, on Tuesday morning.

With heavy rainfall during the previous few days, the water was quite deep and Ann went underwater several times as she scrambled for her pet Millie, who had run into the river - pulling in Ann in the process.

Ann became trapped under a bridge, clutching her dog and yelling for help.

"I was terrified," she told the Herald.

Shouting

"I felt like I was under the water for a lifetime, I was totally exhausted and thought I wouldn't see daylight again.

"I kept shouting for help and slipped under the water several times as I tried to hold onto the side of the wall of the bridge.

"I couldn't get out because the current swept me back and I kept going under."

Luckily for Ann, two hero gardai from Clondalkin Garda Station pulled her out of the water and a third officer helped her calm down.

"I was in a lot of shock, I couldn't hear anything," she added.

"But I was doing my best to hold onto the side of the wall and I saw a garda's head, who told me not to worry."

Two gardai, Brendan and Kieran, waded into the water and pulled her and Millie out. A third garda, Ciara, also rushed to her assistance.

"You don't realise how grateful I am - they're three heroes," said Ann.

"I was really relieved and I just wanted to go home.

"The ambulance crew then arrived and did the vitals, and said I was fine. They even drove me back to the house."

Ann said her son Jimmy was shocked when he saw the ambulance crew dropping her off.

"He didn't know what to think, but he was happy to know I was okay," she said.

On yesterday's RTE One's Liveline, Ann spoke to Alan Fleming and his grandson Evan (4), who called the gardai after spotting her in the water.

Gone

Speaking on the show, Alan said they were walking their dog along the river, where the water had risen about two feet.

"I only saw her head and her shoulders and I saw her pulling and I thought the water must be pulling her. But then she was gone," he said.

"I barely saw somebody moving under the tunnel. I thought the best thing to do was ring the guards."

Ann thanked Alan and Evan for saving her life. "God knows what would have happened without them," she said.

"I'm very grateful and it would be great to meet up and thank them once the pandemic is over."

The gardaí, as well as Alan and Evan, were rewarded certs of recognition today for their bravery.

Herald