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23 Aug, 2007 18:34

Teen rescued after four days adrift in Azov Sea

A 14-year-old boy, Rodion Kadyrov, has been rescued from the Sea of Azov after four days adrift. He was picked up after an air and sea search of the waters off the Kuban coast. It was a tense time for rescuers and the parents of Rodion Kadyrov.

Rodion Kadyrov went surfing, when he did not return for supper, his parents were alarmed. Ten boats, two helicopters and the military were called in to search for the youngster. 

In three days the helicopters combed the entire Azov Sea up to Ukraine's border.

“I had been surfing the whole day. Fell asleep, then I woke up and saw a ship. Thought they would save me, but then I realised it was abandoned,” Rodion Kadyrov said.

The rescuers found the boy on top of the mast when the ship was in flames. He was taken to hospital suffering from severe burns, dehydration and exhaustion. Rodion's parents say they never gave up hope.
“We prayed God our son would survive. All these days we did not lose hope,”
they said.

Rescuers admit the boy had a lucky escape, and say he was foolish to venture into the open sea without a life jacket and radio.

His injuries mean Rodion will not be surfing any time soon, but his family have plans to come back to the Azov Sea next summer.