In a heart-stopping incident near a high school, a brave Bedfordview resident rescued a schoolgirl from kidnappers. A 38-year-old resident and army reservist, Alex McLean demonstrated exceptional courage and quick thinking.
Recognising his heroic actions, McLean has been awarded the title of community hero for June by the Resident’s Action Group (RAG).
McLean, who operates a renovation company in Wychwood, was driving from his offices when he noticed three terrified schoolgirls running for their lives. The schoolgirls had been walking together after school when the kidnappers approached them in a red Uno.
McLean described the scene: “They looked so petrified, bags flying, looking backwards and just running. That’s when I started to wonder what was happening because I could not see around that corner. I investigated and spotted a red Uno. It was the only car that was on the road. Then I saw a tiny girl who is in matric kicking, screaming, punching, and fighting for her life. A man was trying to grab her and pull her into the car.”
Acting swiftly, McLean manoeuvred his vehicle to block the kidnappers’ path. In response, they threw the girl out of the vehicle. They attempted to reverse, resulting in a collision between them and McLean’s vehicle.
“She shouted they have a gun. I put my car in reverse, not knowing how badly I had damaged my radiator,” McLean recounted.
While the passenger and driver of the Uno managed to escape on foot, McLean’s primary concern was the girl’s well-being. He drove towards her, honking his horn to attract attention and parked his vehicle. Embracing the shaken girl, McLean and the schoolgirl found solace in tears.
Local security companies were the first on the scene. The police arrived an hour and a half later. Authorities discovered additional cell phones inside the abandoned vehicle. This revelation indicated that the culprits had also stolen the girl’s phone at gunpoint before attempting to kidnap her.
Unfortunately, the collision with the kidnappers’ car severely damaged McLean’s vehicle, leading his insurance company to write it off. As a result, McLean now finds himself without reliable transportation, impacting his personal life and renovation business.
Reflecting on the incident, McLean was happy knowing he had saved a life. He said, ” Knowing she’s alive because of me is rewarding. It was also emotional because on that same day, I was listening to the radio and they were talking about a girl that was found dead in a field. When I saw the commotion, I told myself they are not taking another girl or another child, not on my watch.”
While grateful for the girl’s safety, McLean urgently needs assistance to acquire a replacement vehicle. RAG has raised R7000 towards this cause and is appealing to residents to contribute.
To donate, please use the following banking details:
- Residents Action Group
- Reference: Alex Car
- Standard Bank
- Account number: 002635283
- Branch code: 051001
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