THE heartbroken family of three year old Dylan Milsom who died after tragically falling into a canal has paid an emotional tribute to their 'hero' son.

Emergency services descended on the Kennet and Avon Canal, in Newbury, on Saturday, March 13, after the youngster tumbled into the water.

National reports suggest Dylan's mother Shelley Nardini, from Newbury, jumped into the canal to save her son before both were rescued from the water.

The mother and son were rushed to hospital but police later confirmed the three year old tragically died hours after. Ms Nardini, aged 36, was treated and later discharged home.

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Today the family have released an emotional tribute to their 'hero' son and 'rainbow baby' Dylan, who went to Chieveley pre-school.

Dylan Milsom, 3

Dylan Milsom, 3

It said: "Dylan was our rainbow baby; and we knew he was special from the moment he was born. He brought a ray of sunshine into our lives.

“Blossoming into a happy, brave, and warm little boy, his brightness simply shone from him wherever he went, always saying hello with a smile to everyone he met. He had an infectious energy for life and poured his heart and soul into everything he did.

“Life was one big, exciting adventure and more than anything he loved being outdoors, so walks were part of our daily lives."

The family described how Dylan would rarely be seen without his scooter or more recently his first bike from Santa last Christmas. The tribute added 'if he wasn’t on two wheels, he was on his dad’s two shoulders'.

The family continued: “On our walks, Dylan would splash in puddles, squelch through mud, and climb any log he could find. We would pick up pooh sticks to throw into the river from the little bridge, feed the ducks, always keeping a look out for oval stones to add to his collection at home, and talk about “the sleeping hedgehog” better known to us as fir cones.

“Our walks would often have a park along the way where Dylan would often make a friend and he loved to play with others.

“Dylan was such a bright, clever, and inquisitive boy who absorbed all that was around him. He was always desperate to learn about everything he could, be it letters, numbers, or colours, and when asked, he would always say his favourite colours were yellow, orange, pink, and purple – a very bright mix, fitting for such a bright boy."

Dylan Milsom, 3

Dylan Milsom, 3

The tribute described Dylan's love for pre-school, cheering on the days he attended Chieveley pre-school.

His family also described how Dylan had been the 'best big brother anyone could wish for' at home with his baby brother. The family said he would teach his sibling new skills like rolling, walking, and how to play games, or comfort him with 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star'.

The tribute added: "Dylan was such a funny little boy, bursting with character, a cheeky laugh and just the right amount of mischief. We often called him a cheeky monkey and he would always respond by telling us he was a Tiger, thinking this would get him out of being called cheeky.

“From then he became our ‘cheeky Tiger’ and Dylan dubbed his little brother the ‘cheeky Monkey’ of the family.

“It has warmed our hearts to hear from so many of the people we know that it was not just our little family that felt he was special and how Dylan could light up a room."

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Adding: “Dylan simply loved life and he made our lives richer every day. He had a beautiful smile, and we loved his cheeky happy go lucky zest for life.

“These words don’t even come close to describing what an amazing and special little boy Dylan was. Dylan touched the lives of so many people and brought so much light into the world of those who knew him and even those who didn’t."

The family praised the help of the emergency services and thanked them for 'the immense response and unrelenting effort to do everything possible to save our little boy', but also for 'the genuine emotion and care displayed through their efforts'.

The tribute concluded: “We will miss our beautiful boy forever and keep him close in our hearts always. He will forever be our hero, our world, our everything – our Dylan.”

Dylan Milsom, 3

Dylan Milsom, 3