Two-year-old girl dies in hospital after father killed in sea tragedy
Published 24/08/2016 | 12:39
A two-year-old girl who was swept into the sea during an incident in which her father was killed has died in hospital, police said.
Mckayla Bruynius died at Bristol Children's Hospital on Tuesday night, having been caught by a large wave at Fistral beach in Newquay, Cornwall, last Friday.
Her father, Rudy Bruynius, also died in the incident, during a weekend in which a total of six people were killed in tragedies around the coast.
The little girl's mother, Lisinda, paid tribute to her daughter and husband in a statement released by Devon and Cornwall Police.
"Rudy was a loving, caring and supportive husband, father and friend," she said.
"He had a great sense of humour and was an active person. He always put other people first. Mckayla was a busy bee and always happy.
"I am in disbelief at what has happened. I am so shocked at how quickly the sea condition changed on that day whilst we were enjoying a family time together in Cornwall.
"I pray that others can learn from our tragedy as I do not wish for anybody to go through our grief.
"I would like to thank the RNLI, the staff at Royal Cornwall Hospital, the staff from Bristol Royal Hospital for Children, the emergency services and all the members of public for their generous support and prayers they have given towards my family.
"I would especially like to thank the people of Cornwall for their messages of love and offers of help.
"I will never forget the close community spirit displayed towards us. Please respect our privacy at this really difficult time and allow my sons and I to try to come to terms with what has happened."
The family of five were on rocks at Fistral beach at around 5.20pm last Friday when Mr and Mrs Bruynius and Mckayla were washed into the sea by a large wave.
The RNLI lifeboat, Coastguard helicopter, beach lifeguards, police, air ambulance and ambulance crews attended the scene.
Mr and Mrs Bruynius were rescued from the water by RNLI lifeguards.
They carried out CPR on Mr Bruynius before he was taken by air ambulance to the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro. The gardener, who was originally from South Africa, died later that evening.
Mckayla was recovered from the sea by an RNLI lifeboat before being flown to Derriford Hospital in Plymouth and later transferred to Bristol Children's Hospital.
Mr and Mrs Bruynius's two sons managed to stay on the rocks and were located by the Coastguard. They suffered minor injuries before being taken by ambulance to hospital.
The family, who are from Croydon in south London, were holidaying in the Newquay area when the incident happened.
Detective Constable Jarrod Yewen, who is investigating the incident, said: "This is a tragic case for all those involved and our thoughts remain with the family at what is a deeply traumatic time for them.
"The deaths are not being investigated as suspicious, therefore the police will now prepare a file for HM Coroner and an inquest will be held in due course."
A fundraising page, set up to support the family, has seen more than £30,000 donated.