Former Wisbech man drowned along with the teenager he tried to rescue at Bawsey Pits, Kings Lynn

Ryan Pettengell

Ryan Pettengell - Credit: Archant

A FORMER Wisbech man was being hailed a hero tonight after it emerged he drowned along with the 16 year-old boy he tried to rescue.

Full details remain sketchy but friends of Ryan Pettengell, 41, have told how he heard the cries for help from family and friends of the 16 year old and dived into Bawsey Pits near Kings Lynn to try and help.

Mr Pettengell is thought to have only lived in Lynn in recent years and had run a household waste clearance business which he started in Wisbech.

“He was a great bloke and all his friends and family will miss him loads,” a friend posted on Facebook.

Another said Mr Pettengell is “gonna be so missed. You made me laugh, you were so funny always making us laugh. Miss u already. Rest easy lovely xxxx”.


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The warmth of the tributes was echoed by a friend who was with him on Tuesday night at Bawsey.

The man told reporters in Kings Lynn his friend was “the best you could have. He was always there for you.”

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The man said Mr Pettengell dived in to help even though he was still using a wrist support after recently breaking an arm.

The teenager who also died has not been named. He is known to have come from London but recently had been staying in Ely.

Mr Pettengell was named locally. Norfolk Police are yet to formally confirm his death. They have yet to name the teenager who also drowned.

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