THE grieving mother of a student from South Harrow who drowned tragically on his birthday says he gave her the "love of 100 years in just 18".
Mehmuda Ahmed, 35, sobbed as she paid tribute to Anwaar Ali Ahmed, who died after getting into difficulties while swimming in the Thames in rural Buckinghamshire on Friday evening.
The young man was a former pupil of Whitmore High School, in Porlock Avenue, West Harrow, and had been expected to get straight As in his A-levels at the College of North West London.
Speaking at the family home in Roxeth Green Avenue, Mrs Ahmed said: "I just feel like dying and haven't slept a moment.
"He was everything to me. I just can't tell you how close we were. He used to care for me.
"He was such a bright student. He was a genius in computing and he had applied to take a BSc in computer science at university."
Mr Ahmed had two younger brothers, Haseeb, 16, and Hamza, 14, who attend his old secondary school.
Mrs Ahmed added: "They are devastated. They are just crying and they haven't slept. They really loved their brother."
Just the day after Friday's tragedy, Mr Ahmed was due to go to Kahuta in Pakistan to join Haseeb and spend two months visiting relatives and his fiancée Sana, 18.
His mother said: "He was so happy. He had planned to fly to Pakistan on July 4 and he had got his luggage ready.
"Everything was ready. I had bought him new shirts, new trousers and new aftershave. The trip was the biggest gift I could have given him for his birthday."
On the day he died, Mr Ahmed watched TV before driving to Watford to lunch with his father.
He returned home, ate food his mother had made and then headed out to meet friends and drive to Medmenham, near Marlow in Buckinghamshire.
Mr Ahmed spoke to his mother on his mobile phone at 6.15pm, her last contact with him. Mrs Ahmed added: "At around 11.15pm two policemen came to my door and said: 'There were two boys in the water. One managed to come out but your son is missing.'
"Everything went dark. I was praying to God.
"His friends later said they were having a race. Within two minutes he had reached the other side. He was an excellent swimmer. He was 6ft 1in and strongly built.
"When they were coming back, he was about to reach the bank and something happened to his breathing and he put his hand up for help.
"His friends and a man from a boat dived in. They held his hand three times but he slipped under."
The accident happened at 7.50pm but Mr Ahmed's body was not recovered by Thames Valley Police divers until 11.30pm.
An inquest has been opened and adjourned. The funeral was yesterday.Mrs Ahmed added: "He had arranged for us to pick up his results from college and said he was going to make his mum and dad proud.
"I shall remember him with every breath until I die."