‘Hero’ British grandfather, 60, drowns after saving his two grandsons in sea on Crete holiday

“I loved my dad very much. He is my hero. I still can’t believe I’m never going to see him again,” his son said

A British grandfather has died after saving his two grandsons from being swept out to sea in Crete, according to reports.

The 60-year-old man, who has been identified as Jonathan Smith, from South Lanarkshire, jumped into the sea to help rescue his two grandsons, aged seven and ten.

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The two boys were caught in strong currents in the bay of Gouves, northern Crete, Greece.

Mr Smith reportedly dived into the water to save his grandchildren with a coastguard team assisting to recover the two boys.

Both boys survived and were taken to hospital to be treated for minor injuries, however Mr Smith tragically drowned.

‘He got exhausted and it was impossible for him to get out’

Anthee Carassava, a journalist based in Athens, told BBC Radio’s Good Morning Scotland: "They simply went off for a swim and the two young boys, aged seven and 10, ran into some choppy waters.

"The grandfather got very upset and unnerved and he went in, trying to save them.

“He managed to pull them out of these choppy waters... but in his bid to actually reach these rocks along the beach, he simply got exhausted and it was impossible for him to get out."

Family’s tribute to ‘hero’

The tragedy happened when Mr Smith was on holiday with his wife and daughter, the children’s mother.

His son David told the Sun: “I can’t believe I’ll never see him again.

“I loved my dad very much. He is my hero. I still can’t believe I’m never going to see him again after he left to go on his holidays. It’s an unexpected tragedy.”

The UK Foreign Office said it was supporting the family of a British man who had died on the Greek island.

It is understood Mr Smith had recently retired from North Lanarkshire Council and was working for the NHS part-time.

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