hm, i had another interesting translation: The boy had kept me strong. ....for example, after a tragedy....tenere means to hold, to keep etc.
Shouldn't the english translation here also be in adjective form? "The boy had held me tight" etc
Doesn't "tightly" describe how the person is held? That would make it an adverb wouldn't it?
google translate (not always reliable) has il ragazzo aveva tenuto me forte and for "has" il ragazzo mi ha tenuto forte. my verb book has tenersi to hold on (to) to support oneself (by) stay, keep, follow, stick (to) abide (by) keep oneself (from) whew