Tributes pour in for hero dad who died after jumping into Lake Garda to save teenage son

25 July 2022, 15:32

Tributes have been paid to Aran Chada after he died leaping into Lake Garda to save his teenage son
Tributes have been paid to Aran Chada after he died leaping into Lake Garda to save his teenage son. Picture: Getty

By Megan Hinton

Tributes have been paid to a hero British father who died after he leapt into Lake Garda to save his teenage son.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Aran Chada, a 51-year-old sales director from Leicestershire, is thought to have had a seizure when he leapt from a boat into the water.

Mr Chada was reportedly on holiday with his partner, Holly Mosley, 39, and their children - a 14-year-old boy and a girl aged seven - and was due to celebrate his birthday on Tuesday.

Neighbours in the village of Woodhouse Eaves, near Loughborough, spoke on Monday of their shock at hearing the news.

One man, who declined to give his name, said: "They have been part of the village for years. It is just very, very tragic."

Another man, who has known the family many years, said it was "heart-breaking".

At their home in the village the blinds had been pulled closed.

Read more: Hero dad feared dead after jumping into Lake Garda to save teenage son

The family had been on the lake in a rented boat on Friday when Mr Chada saw his son struggling in the water and jumped in to rescue him, according to The Times.

The coastguard believes he may have suffered a thermal shock seizure. Temperatures were around 38C but the water was "a good 10 degrees colder".

A rescue effort including a robot submarine and helicopters was unable to find Mr Chada.

Strong winds have hampered efforts to locate him, but the coastguard vowed to keep looking after the storm cleared.

Read more: France blames Brexit for Channel chaos and says UK should join the Schengen zone

Coastguard commander Antonello Ragadale told the paper: "This man was a hero and we fear he drowned, but we're doing everything we can to find his body.

"Divers arrived with the helicopters but could do little because a steep, rocky shelf descends to a great depth at that point.

"A civil protection agency remote control mini-sub was sent down and searched for the man until late into the night, but to no avail."

According to his LinkedIn page, Mr Chada worked for Global Energy Ventures, a company that services oil fields in Africa. Mr Ragadale pledged to continue the search, which started again at dawn on Saturday, adding: "The father was very brave in what he did.

"He saw his child in danger and he did what any parent would do and tried to save them, which he did."

The Foreign Office said in a statement: "We are supporting the family of a British man who has been reported missing in Italy and are in contact with the Italian police."

The family, who appear to have frequently made trips to the lakes in Italy, was taken to their hotel in Riva del Garda and is being supported by experts.