Double tragedy as carer dies after jumping into icy water while trying to rescue disabled man

​Aaron Ritchie

Aaron Ritchie's family said he was a "loveable character"

Greater Manchester Police
George Bunn

By George Bunn

Published: 30/11/2023

- 11:31

Tributes have been paid to Aaron Ritchie, 49 and his carer

The carer of a man who fell into a freezing canal has died in a double tragedy.

Aaron Ritchie, 49, fell into the water near Abram, Greater Manchester and his carer, who has not been named, is believed to have heroically entered into the canal to try and save him.

However, tragically, both have now died.

It is believed they had been walking at the time and Aaron, who had special needs, fell in.

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Greater Manchester Police said that both men were pulled from the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Crank Wood, a beauty spot near Ashton-in-Makerfield.Ashton-in-Makerfield.

Emergency services attended the scene and both were taken to hospital.

However, sadly both men tragically passed away.

The next of kin of Aaron’s carer, a 60-year-old man, has been informed of his death.


Emergency services attended the scene at the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Crank Wood,

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A spokesperson from Aaron's family said: "It's come as a complete shock to us as a family surrounding the tragic accident of what happened on Tuesday afternoon. Aaron was a loveable character who made a big impression on everyone who knew him.

"Aaron had special needs and he loved the outdoor life and as long as he had his puzzles, laces and spinning tops he was happy.

"Aaron is surely going to be missed by us as a family.

"We would like to pass on our sincere condolences to his carers' family and a special thank you to the emergency services who attended trying to save them."


Greater Manchester Police is not treating their deaths as suspicious


Greater Manchester Police is continuing to establish the circumstances behind their deaths.

Their deaths are not being treated as suspicious.

A scene remains in place at the canal.

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