An 11-year-old boy saved his grandad’s life, with the help of skills he picked up while playing a computer game.
Charley Cullen, from Slane in Co Meath, took control of the car after his grandfather blacked out behind the wheel while doing over 115kph.
Charley was in the passenger seat while grandad Finn was driving him home from drama class.
Finn fell unconscious at the wheel but his foot stayed on the accelerator while the car sped on.
Amazingly Charley kept his cool and managed to steer the car away from danger.
The schoolboy, who fractured his skull when the runaway motor crashed, said, “I grabbed hold of the wheel and pulled it back out on to the road.”
“We met a few cars going by. I had one hand on the steering wheel and the other trying to wake papa,” he said.
Charley said the only ‘driving’ experience he had was through the PlayStation game Grand Theft Auto, and these skills helped him in his brave mission.
The boy said the car was heading towards a sheer drop with a river at the bottom of it, so he knew he had to act fast.
Charley steered the car across a busy road, until it crashed into the gates of a building.
The boy pulled his grandfather from the car and woke him up before carrying him 50 yards to his house.
“I had a haematoma on my head and that night they were more worried if anything had happened to my brain. But a few weeks later I found out I had actually fractured my skull.
“Papa was bleeding a lot – we got to the house and my Nanna didn’t know anything about what was happening. I opened the door and I can remember the scream in the back of my head,” he said.
Finn doesn’t know why he blacked out but said it is a miracle both of them are alive.
On Tuesday, FAI boss John Delaney had a treat for the young sports fan.
He said, “It’s such a wonderful story – we want to invite Charley, his grandad and members of the family to watch Ireland at a game of his choice.”
The boy is going to see his heroes play England in June next year.
Charley said, “You don’t know how much this means to me – it means the world.”