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Monique Clapp. Pictures: Supplied
“He was my knight in shining armour‚” said Monique Clapp who narrowly avoided going into premature labour on a halted train in Cape Town‚ thanks to 18-year-old Max Jewell.
“I was travelling home from Plumstead; the train had stopped at Retreat station and was stationary due to signal issues‚” she said‚ recalling her ordeal last week.
Clapp had been in pain throughout the day but did not think it was serious. “When I was on the train I started having extreme backache. My stomach started to pull tight.
“I started crying because I was stuck on this train.The pain had gotten excruciating to the point where I couldn’t take it anymore. I knew that I was going into labour and there was no way I could get off”.
Jewell immediately offered a helping hand when he noticed Clapp in distress.
The plucky Wynberg Boys High pupil helped her off the train and‚ using the Uber app on his cellphone‚ hailed a cab.
“I asked whether she needed any help. I asked whether I could take her off the train and order an Uber‚” he told TMG Digital.
He described the incident as “intense” but the schoolboy kept his wits about him.
“My fiance offered to pay Max for the Uber but he refused‚ saying he didn’t mind paying. He travelled with me from Retreat Station until we met my fiance in Fish Hoek”.
When the couple arrived at hospital‚ they were told she was in labour and was already starting to dilate‚ but medical staff managed to halt the labour process.
“Because I was 33 weeks [pregnant] my son’s lungs are underdeveloped‚ so they had to stop my labour. They didn’t want to run the risk. If it wasn’t for Max I would have had a premature baby so I have him to thank”.
Clapp posted her thanks on social media and the good deed was celebrated on his school’s Facebook page.
“When I helped the lady‚ I didn’t think that it was a big thing. I didn’t expect anything to happen. I just helped a woman because she needed the help‚” said Jewell.
Clapp has since found out that Max lives within walking distance from her and plans to invite him over when the baby arrives.