Belfast Telegraph

River tragedy boy ‘just melted your heart’, say distraught parents

Kayden Fleck died after he was swept away in the River Braid in Co Antrim.

The heartbroken parents of a five-year-boy who died after being swept away in a fast-flowing river in Northern Ireland have said their son “just melted your heart”.

Darrel and Leanne Fleck said their son Kayden was “happy-go-lucky” and “your average wee boy”.

They described Kayden and his twin brother, Jayden, as “the two musketeers”.

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Kayden died after being swept away in the fast-flowing River Braid

A statement released by the Police Service of Northern Ireland on behalf of Mr and Mrs Fleck added: “The family want to thank each of the agencies who were involved in the search and rescue operation yesterday, and say they are grateful for the community support they have received since.”

Kayden was swept away more than four miles down the Braid River in Ballymena, Co Antrim, on Saturday.

A major search and rescue operation was launched and the boy was recovered from the river and airlifted to the hospital, but he was declared dead shortly afterwards.

The boy’s school, Harryville Primary, has asked for everyone to remember Kayden’s family in their prayers.

In a statement on Facebook, the school said it was “a very sad time”.

Harryville Primary School Nursery and Nurture Units are sharing this page. Please help if you can.

Posted by Harryville Primary School and Nursery and Nurture Units on Sunday, February 11, 2018

Kayden fell into the river near Skye Park at around 1pm on Saturday.

He was recovered from the water more than 45 minutes later near Tullaghgarley and immediately airlifted to hospital.

As news of the tragedy unfolded, the boy’s school was inundated with messages of condolence for his family.

Posts on the school’s Facebook wall read: “You are all in my thoughts and prayers at this time of unimaginable loss.”

Another said: “Bless this wee man. You will be deeply missed.”

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