Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole: Tributes paid to Thames hero

Tributes have been paid to a “brave” 20-year-old from south London who died after jumping into the Thames to save a woman who fell from London Bridge.  

Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole, a former student at Peckham’s Harris Academy, entered the river shortly after midnight on Friday with another man after they witnessed the woman fall.

While the coastguard and marine units managed to rescue the woman and the other man, Folajimi’s body was found later that morning.

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Sir Dan Moynihan, chief executive of the Harris Federation, told the Sunday Times: “This is incredibly sad news.

“The selflessness of this brave young man has cost him his life in trying to save the life of another.

“A family and friends have been deprived of watching Folajimi enjoy a successful and happy life full of potential.

“This is a tragic end to a life of promise — selflessly choosing to get involved in a situation many others would have chosen to ignore.”

Tributes to Folajimi, known also as Jimi, and praise for his selfless act, have poured in on social media.

One user wrote: “You were a very brave man who will have left his family wishing he wasn’t quite so brave.

“R.I.P Folajimi Olubunmi-Adewole.”

A fundraiser has been set up by the Malcolm World Foundation to help fund his funeral and support his family.

Jimi worked with the charity, founded in memory of Malcolm Mide-Madariola, a Peckham student who was murdered outside Clapham tube station in 2018.

The fundraising page reads: “On his way back from work, he saw the woman jumping into the river not thinking twice after calling the police, convinced he could do something to save her he jumped in and drowned saving her.

“This is to support the funeral and the rest for post -funeral as he was hardworking college graduate who at 20 was the family’s breadwinner.

“He is survived by his aged parents and siblings.

“Your little support will go a long way. Pure- hearted soul. Great helper. Loving boy.”

A City of London Police spokesperson said: “We were called at 12.12am on Saturday April 24 to reports of a woman in the River Thames close to London Bridge.

“Two men, who had witnessed the woman fall from the bridge, entered the river to try and save her.

“The Coastguard and Metropolitan Police Marine Units were able to rescue the woman and one of the men.

“Sadly, following an extensive search involving police helicopters, marine units, LFB, LAS and City Police officers, the missing man was not located.

“At 6am the same morning, a body was found believed to be that of the missing man.

“His next of kin have been made aware and are being supported by officers from the City of London Police.”

You can view the fundraiser here

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