Man who died trying to save woman in River Thames deserves medal, says fellow rescuer

Tom Ambrose
·2-min read
<p>Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole was put forward for the Royal Humane Society award by City of London Police</p> (GOFUNDME/UNPIXS (EUROPE))

Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole was put forward for the Royal Humane Society award by City of London Police


A 20-year-old man who died after jumping into the River Thames to save a woman “deserves” to be recognised for his actions, his fellow rescuer has said.

Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole was put forward for the Royal Humane Societyaward by City of London Police for his "bravery and selfless actions".

Joaquin Garcia told the BBC that he backed the campaign, saying: “I think he deserves that. I think it would be really good for the family as well.”

Mr Olubunmi-Adewole was on his way home from work at a central London restaurant when he and Mr Garcia entered the water at around midnight on Saturday, April 24.

The coastguard and the Metropolitan Police marine unit rescued the woman and Mr Garcia, but could not locate Mr Olubunmi-Adewole. His body was found six hours later.

Flowers, candles and the word “hero” have been left near the scene of the incident at London Bridge.

An online petition to install a memorial plaque for Mr Olubunmi-Adewole has reached almost 150,000 signatures.

The City of London Police is also looking to award him with a commendation from Commissioner Ian Dyson.

Mr Garcia said he had called his parents in Spain following the incident.

“[My father] started to say thank you, you are very good... for being like you are,” he said, but added “don't do it again”.

Mr Olubunmi-Adewole's family have described him as a “loving son” and “best friend” who is “irreplaceable”.

In statements through the Met, his father Michael Adewola said: “Jimi is a loving son and my best friend. He has a good heart and always willing to help everyone around him. I'll forever miss him.”

His mother Olasunkanmi Adewole said: “My son Jimi is my strength, he takes care of me and everyone. I'm empty without Jimi. I pray to have peace in my life.”

His brother described him as “irreplaceable” and “the most generous person”.

Additional reporting by PA.

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