A BRIT dad is missing and feared dead after jumping into a lake to save his 14-year-old son on holiday in Italy.
The man – who has not been named – leapt into Lake Garda after seeing his son get into difficulty swimming yesterday.
He was able to rescue the teen and pushed him back towards a boat the family had hired for the day where he was dragged on board by his mother.
When she looked for her 51-year-old husband, she was horrified to see him struggling in the water and slip below it.
Her screams for help alerted other boats and a coastguard unit which raced to the scene by the lakeside town of Limone.
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Rescue efforts continued late in Friday night as the woman, her 14-year-old and a five-year-old daughter waited for an update on their father’s condition.
The man – who is reported to be a company director and was set to celebrate his birthday next Tuesday, according to the Daily Mail – was staying at the nearby four star hotel Hotel du Lac et Du Parc at Riva del Garda.
It’s feared the hero Brit dad will be the third person to drown at Lake Garda in a week after two men – aged 36 and 41 – died in separate incidents.
An eyewitness told local media: “We were about 100m from the shore when we heard a woman screaming for help.
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“I looked over and she was on a boat with two children shouting and pointing to the water so we called the emergency services and they were there very quickly.”
Officials believe the man may have suffered from a thermal shock seizure caused by the cold water.
Coastguard units, a firefighting boat, and several volunteer vessels were used in the search while a helicopter scanned the water.
A robot camera and a specialist team of divers were deployed to scour the bed of the lake.
Lake Garda is a popular tourist spot in northern Italy known for its breath-taking scenery and dramatic mountain landscape.
Brits flock to the plush spot every year and former PM Theresa May is known to be a regular visitor.
A coastguard spokesman said: “The family has rented a boat from a local company for two and a half hours and were due to return it a little before the accident.
“The man dived in to save his eldest child who was in difficulty and he managed to push him back towards the boat but he then got into trouble.
“It was very hot on Friday afternoon but the water was a good ten degrees colder so it’s possible he could have had a seizure due to the thermal shock.
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“The search went on for almost seven hours and stopped when it got dark but has now resumed. The family are in their hotel with police and a psychologist has been offered to them for support.”
The Sun Online had contacted the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office for comment.