China / Society

Man dies unexpectedly after saving boy

By Huang Zhiling ( Updated: 2014-02-17 17:33

A man, 51, died unexpectedly after saving a boy, 12, from a lake in Gongxian county, Sichuan province, on Sunday. The boy's mother knelt before the man's wife to apologize for his death, according to West China Metropolis Daily.

While walking his dog in Gonghu Park in Gongquan, Zhang Yan heard the boy's cries for help from Gonghu Lake. Less than a minute later, he approached the lake, took off his coat and jumped into the icy water to lift the boy above the water.

Tian Bin, another rescuer who ran after Zhang, pulled the boy ashore first and then Zhang, with the help of others.

Zhang was shivering with cold and fainted on the bank of the lake and his face started changing color. Several minutes later, a doctor from a private clinic in the town arrived and said after an initial examination that he could not save Zhang.

Half an hour later, an ambulance arrived and the medics confirmed Zhang's death.

Onlookers blamed the biting cold water's adverse impact on Zhang for his death.

Zhang, an ex-serviceman, had been in very good health. In the summer of 2012, he saved a girl from drowning in the same lake. His family did not know about his good deed until onlookers told them after his death.

To apologize for Zhang's death, Zhao Yongfeng, the mother of the boy he saved, knelt in front of Zhang's wife Xiong Shulan outside Zhang's mourning hall on Sunday evening, West China Metropolis Daily said.

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