Hero dad smiled just before he died after rescuing two of his children from the sea in Barmouth

Doting father Jonathan Stevens died just after rescuing his two children from the sea. He had one final smile when he realised they were safe.

His daughter Lauren who has been left heartbroken, watched the tragedy from the beach as he rescued her brother and sister, but said her Dad ‘used all his strength’ to open his eyes and see if they were safe.

On Sunday afternoon, Jonathan dived into the water after hearing two of his children screaming and realising they were in danger.

He jumped in and tried to pull his children to safety before a major rescue operation was launched – which included the lifeboat and the Coastguard search and rescue helicopter.

The youngsters were pulled to safety and Mr Stevens was brought to the shore and given CPR on the beach before being airlifted to Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Jonathan sadly died Sunday afternoon.

His daughter Lauren said she pleaded with life guards to save him, and revealed that after saving her brother and sister, her Dad had one final smile.

Jonathan has been described a ‘hero’ by his heartbroken partner Laura Burford.

Daughter Lauren spoke to The Sun saying: “They (the lifeguards) ran in to the water too and swam out to dad but by the time they got to him his head was just bobbing up and down in the water. He looked lifeless.

“They got to him pretty quickly and swam in with him being carried between them, then when they got close to the beach they put him on his feet. The water was waist high at this point.

“Dad opened his eyes and looked over to me, Joshua, and Lacey and Jack, who by now were back with us and he gave us a smile.

“But the next second he collapsed again and the lifeguards carried him in, laid him down on the sand and gave him CPR. He never opened his eyes again.

“I think Dad had used his last bit of strength to open his eyes and smile at us and when he saw we were all okay he knew he could let go and die happily.”

Lauren said her brother and sister were trying out a new body board, :”I could see Lacey and Jack being swept out about 100m in just a few seconds.

“Jack was clinging to the body board and I think he had the string attached to his leg but they were being pulled out so fast.

“They’re both good swimmers but it kept pulling them under the water. Jack especially was really struggling and at one point he went under for about 10 seconds.

“Dad got to Lacey first and pushed her away from the current, then he went to Jack, who by now was another 50m further out.

“He got hold of him and shoved him out of the current too but I think it took all his strength because next thing dad disappeared under the water.”

GoFundMe page has been set up for Ms Burford, and for Mr Stevens’ children, by friend Mel Plowman.

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