Wave of tragedy on Balapitiya’s Bandarawatta Beach: How laughter turned to tears…

Wave of tragedy on Balapitiya’s Bandarawatta Beach: How laughter turned to tears…

Written by Staff Writer

18 Aug, 2016 | 9:24 pm

The way our lives change, the sudden change in events and atmosphere, is something that cannot be expected or forecast. Nobody knows when their life would change, for better or worse. Not a soul living on this earth knows when their clock would stop ticking or how.

This is an unfortunate story of four families, who just wanted to have a good day’s fun and games at the Bandarawatta beach….

On a fateful Wednesday evening, four families reached the Bandarawatte beach, Balapitiya, in four three-wheelers with hopes to enjoy the casual sunset with fun and games. Little did they know, that the day of laughter spent with relatives, would end on the cement floor of the Balapitiya Base Hospital…

During the time filled with laughter, nature decided to have its say in their fate as the once calm seas turned rough unexpectedly, with no previous sign or warning.

The moments playing with a plastic bottle filled with water in the shallow seas, ended with just one rough wave.

Three have been confirmed to have drowned and the body of one of them was recovered later in the evening of  Thursday August 18. Operations continue to locate the last missing person…

The fate of four families were changed by the waves – forever – in a matter of minutes…..

Eye-witness accounts…

Family member: “…The sisters bathed together. The brothers were playing with us with a ball. The waves first dragged my niece and then my sister. I was near the beach. When I went there, the small brother grabbed on to me. Two of them went after the sisters and they too were dragged away. They were brought ashore around an hour later …”

Eye-witness : “… They yelled that two persons were washed away. No one dived in to save them. I jumped in from the rocks. There were two persons in the water. I brought back one …”

Eye-Witness : “… We saw what happened, and we took a boat to sea. We couldn’t reach the area because the sea was rough …”

Father: “… My daughter was still breathing while being taken to hospital. The other had already passed away …”

Family member: “… Only I was able to come back. Both who went to save them also drowned. All four were washed away …”

The victims

Lakshani VasanaLakshani Vasana
Age: 15 years old
From: Pathiraja, Ahungalla
A grade 10 student of Pathiraja Maha Vidyalaya. The eldest of four in her family.

ChandaniU.L.Chandani: was the other woman who drowned.
Age: 34 years old
From: Pathiraja, Ahungalla
Mother of an year old baby

Nadith MadushanNadith Madushan
Age: 18 years old
From: Pathiraja, Ahungalla
The young man had tied the knot just four months ago (April 2016).

Visal Mendis Visal Medis(Still Missing)
Age: 19 years old
From: Kosgoda Junction, Urgasmanhandiya
A student from Balapitiya Siddhartha Vidyalaya, faced the G.C.E. Advanced Level Examination this year.

The search for Visal continues…

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