A courageous bystander who threw himself into the River Medway to save a drowning man said he was just in the right place at the right time.
Dave Grant was walking alongside the water in Maidstone when he spotted someone struggling to stay afloat.
What happened next went on to become a major emergency response as the air ambulance landed on Maidstone Bridge - normally one of the busiest traffic hotspots in the County Town.
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Mr Grant, 64, who trained as a lifeguard 50 years ago, put his skills to good use and dived in to help.
He dragged the man to the river’s edge where John Hawthorne, who was passing by, rushed to haul him out.
EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Hero Dave Grant rescues man from drowning
“All my lifeguard training came back. I was trying to get his attention but it became obvious very quickly that wasn’t going to happen and his head was going under. The adrenalin kicked in and I jumped in,” Mr Grant said.
The man, in his 50s, is believed to have been suffering from a head injury at the time of the accident last Saturday.
Eyewitnesses said he was travelling on a pushbike before plunging into the water shortly before noon.
Mr Grant, of Waldron Drive, Loose, and Mr Hawthorne, also from Maidstone, carried out CPR before paramedics and police arrived.
He added: “When we got him out he didn’t look good, he was purple. He’d been in the water for quite a while. I used to be a social worker and have dealt with difficult situations many times before, so I managed to stay calm.”
Cordons were put in place at either end of the river and officers redirected the public away from the scene.
An ambulance spokesman said the man was gasping for breath when paramedics arrived.
Emergency services and bystanders praised the rescuers for acting so quickly.
A modest Mr Grant said: “I was just in the right place at the right time, it didn’t seem perilous to me diving in. It was a real team effort getting him out.”
The man was taken to Tunbridge Wells Hospital in Pembury where he remains in a serious condition, but he is expected to make a full recovery.
“I was meant to be playing in a golf match that afternoon but it seems fate had different plans for me,” added Mr Grant. “I’m just happy the man is going to be okay.”