A brave young Irish boy is being hailed as a hero by police after he rescued a girl from an attempted abduction.

Tiernan McCready witnessed three men attempting to grab an 18-year-old girl in Co Derry, Northern Ireland, but managed to scare off the would-be abductors.

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The males were trying to get the girl into their van but were interrupted by Tiernan shouting.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) praised the young boy for his courage and said most adults "would be paralyzed in shock, confusion or fear and fail to act until it was too late."

In a Facebook post, the PSNI said: "Tiernan reacted instantly and shouted at the males and led the girl away to safety. He then told his mum who rang the police.

"Let that sink in.

"This could have been the start of a potentially serious and harrowing crime.

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"That girl could have been my child, my sister, your child, your family member," they said.

"The Bogside, Brandywell, and The Fountain Neighbourhood Team presented Tiernan with a PSNI Badge of Honour (and some Maltesers).

"But this doesn’t go anywhere near to paying off the debt our community owes this boy.

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"Our youngsters often get a bad rep but remember the vast majority are brave and big-hearted just like Tiernan."

Tiernan's act of heroism has gone viral since the PSNI revealed his story yesterday, amassing over 53,000 likes and over 5,000 comments.

How do you feel about young Tiernan McCready's act of bravery?
Let us know in the comments below.