FRIENDS of a teenager who drowned while celebrating finishing his A-levels have told of their desperate attempts to rescue him.
Jack Chapman, from Hounslow, died on July 1 while swimming in a reservoir in West Yorkshire, where he was on holiday with friends. He was due to celebrate his 18th birthday a few days later.
An inquest into his death at Halifax Town Hall this week heard how the group had gone into the reservoir to cool off.
Jack and three other boys decided to swim to the other side. Despite being a strong swimmer, Jack started to struggle about halfway across and shouted for help.
One girl, who set off to help him, said she saw his head go under the water three or four times before he disappeared.
The group continued to search for him but said it was pitch black. Jack's body was found later that evening by a police search team, and he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Coroner Roger Whittaker recorded a verdict of accidental death and said the incident acted as a warning to people to take care in the water.
Jack's family said in a statement: "Alan, Jane and Laura would like to thank all their friends and family for the massive amounts of support and kind messages that they have received since the sad loss of Jack. We miss him every second of every day and cherish all the memories we have of him.
"He lived his life to the full and captured the hearts of everyone he met with his kindness and his sense of humour, which has been reflected by the many tributes that have been written about him.
"Jack will forever be in the hearts of all that knew him and we are so proud to have had him as our son."