Clodagh Hayes, aged 13, was commended for her fast acting and quick thinking on May 7, 2017, when she dived into the river by the Marina in order to save the life of a 13-year-old boy.
Clodagh told the Evening Echo it was a privilege to receive a special Youth Award from the Cork City Garda Division.
“In years to come I know I will look back on this day and realise how special and important it was and how grateful I am to receive it.” With regards her selfless and brave act, Clodagh said it had been a split second decision that she had made instinctively.
“I guess in a split second, I just thought I could change a person’s life, I wasn’t going to let someone just die in front of me.” Other Garda Youth Awards given out on the night included a sports award which was accepted by GAA and soccer star Saoirse Noonan.
Saoirse said it had been an amazing week after winning the Women’s FAI Cup with Cork City women’s team on Sunday and then receiving this award.
Saoirse said it was “an honour” to be chosen for the award and said this week had been one that would be difficult to top.
Four other awards and a group award were also given out on the night to worthy winners.
Jennifer Kavanagh, Kayleigh Walsh, Jordan Madden, Elisha Twomey, Ciara Bogue were all acknowledged as outstanding young people as well as the Bishopstown Youth Project, who received the group award.
Elisha, who is a fifth-year student at St Vincent’s secondary school, said she was delighted to receive the award.
Jennifer was described as an inspirational young adult who was a caring, compassionate young person.