Jineesh Jerome, a fisherman from Kerala who saved the lives of 100 people during the devastating floods in the state, died in a road accident in Tamil Nadu’s Kanyakumari. He was in his early 20s.

Widely hailed as a hero, Jineesh was photographed on numerous occasions wading through waist-deep waters to help evacuate stranded people to safety in Chengannur during the floods in August.

According to reports, the fisherman went to Kanyakumari for work. He was riding a bike in Chinnathurai when he lost control while navigating a narrow stretch of road at around noon on Friday. As he fell, a truck coming from behind crushed Jineesh. His friend Jagan, who was riding pillion, was left with serious injuries.

The fisherman was taken to a hospital but he succumbed to his injuries.

Jineesh was buried on Sunday at his native place of Pallivilakam at Poonthura in Thiruvananthapuram district.

Congress MP from Thiruvananthapuram Shashi Tharoor attended the funeral and paid his respect to the hero of the Kerala floods. Tharoor also wrote a poignant message for Jineesh

“Walked in the funeral procession of 24-year-old Jineesh, a hero of the #KeralaFloods credited with saving over 60 lives personally, who was killed when a lorry ran over his motorcycle yesterday. Laid a wreath and prayed for his soul. As the old saw goes, the Good do indeed die young,”

Jineesh was the sole breadwinner of his family. His own home near the sea was wrecked three years ago forcing his family to live in a rented accommodation.

An excellent swimmer and diver, the fisherman was a member of Coastal Warriors, a rescue team comprising fishermen who volunteered to save the lives of the people during the floods.

In spite of the dependency of their livelihood on fishing, the team members decided to use their boats for the rescue mission which they launched on the night of 16 August.