River rescuers on their mettle

By Grace Millimaci


A BOY who was saved from drowning by two friends has had medals made to
thank his rescuers for their bravery.

Peter Darch, 16, suffered spinal injuries after jumping off Old Mandurah

His spinal cord was severely damaged and two vertebrae shattered when a
third friend accidentally jumped on top of him while he swam in the estuary
on January 3.

To protect himself, Peter bent his head but the friend's thigh slammed into
the back of his head.

Jon Humes, 13, saw the accident from the bridge and realised Peter was
sinking towards the bottom.

Jon dived in and only found Peter because of his yellow boardshorts.

"Pete was thinking, "This is it"because he could see he was heading to the
bottom of the water and there was nothing he could do - he couldn't feel
anything from his chin down," Peter's mother, Des Darch, said.

Peter's identical twin brother, Nathan, had completed a first aid course two
months previously and kept Peter in a vice grip to avoid further spinal

Peter is recovering at the Shenton Park campus of Royal Perth Hospital.

__________________________________________________ __
Maksim (Max) Bily
mail to : max777@sympatico.ca

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