Hero honour for runaway car boy
Published: December 14, 2005 | 3004th good news item since 2003
A 15-year-old boy who saved a child in a runaway car is being honoured at a ceremony at Westminster Abbey.
The drama unfolded in September when Matthew Harvey, from Flint, managed to stop the car when Hannah Hopley, four, accidentally released the handbrake.
Matthew, held on till Catriona Hopley, Hannah’s mother who had been adjusting a child seat at the time, jumped in and put the handbrake on.
His Children of Courage award was presented by the Duchess of Cornwall.
The teenager joined nine other young winners for the ceremony after having breakfast with Tony and Cherie Blair at 10 Downing Street.
Matthew had been on his way to St Richard Gwyn Catholic High School when the car when he spotted the car with no driver and a little girl in the back.
First he stood in the car’s path, but when that did not work, he knelt down in front of the car to bring it to a stop.
Matthew was so modest he did not mention the incident to his parents until the next day.
Mrs Hopley, who had been adjusting the child seat when the car started to roll away, said Matthew was “such a hero” and she could not “thank him enough”.
The teenager told her that his actions were a “gut reaction” and he said he just knew he had to do something.
He was being honoured along with other four to 15-year-olds at the Woman’s Own Children of Courage award ceremony.
Former EastEnder Ross Kemp read a Christmas lesson and Gloria Hunniford and Hilda Braid, who plays Walford Square’s Nanna Moon also took part.
Later another reception was taking place for the winners at the House of Lords.