Two UK-based employees of Loughrea-headquartered pharmaceutical company Chanelle have been hailed as heroes after jumping into a swollen river outside their office to save baby twins whose buggy had blown into the canal.
Chanelle’s Fiona Holmes and Jessica Oliver are the toast of their company after saving the lives of twin boys, Riley and Marley Walls last week.
Jessica and Fiona were working in Chanelle’s Hungerford office when they heard a woman screaming ‘My babies, my babies’ and went outside to find a twin buggy sinking in a canal that runs alongside their UK office.
The twins’ mother, who had jumped into the canal, was screaming and trying desperately to pull the buggy up from the deep waters. Instinctively, Jessica and Fiona jumped into the canal, which was swollen due to recent rainfall, to save the babies who were still strapped in their buggy.
Passers-by helped drag them out of the water where Jessica and Fiona raced to a nearby charity shop to take the wet clothes off the babies and wrap them in blankets as hypothermia had already set in. When paramedics arrived at the scene they said another minute under the water and the babies would not have survived.
Little Marley and Riley ?were brought to a nearby hospital where they were treated and are now home and doing well with their family.?
“Jessica and Fiona work in our Hungerford office, but are very much a part of our Chanelle family here in Loughrea”, says Managing Director, Michael Burke. He continues “Jessica and Fiona did not think of the danger to themselves, only to save the lives of two helpless babies. I am extremely proud of them both and their incredible act of bravery.”
Both girls work with Chanelle, Lady McCoy who oversees the Hungerford office and she was fulsome in her praise of her employees.
“When I heard the story, I was amazed at the girls’ response under incredibly upsetting circumstances, said Lady McCoy.
“As a mother myself, I can only imagine the panic and fear. I could not be prouder that Jessica and Fiona came to Ms. Walls’ aid without hesitation. I have always been proud of my staff and how hard they work, but this speaks to the character of who they are. I am truly in awe of them,” she concluded.