Father dies after saving drowning children
RAVEENDRAN COLLAPSED ON THE BEACH AFTER RESCUING HIS CHILDREN WHO WERE SWEPT AWAY BY STRONG WAVES
An Indian family never imagined that a beach where they regularly have weekend fun would turn into a tragic place and devastate their lives.
The father died just after saving his two children who were struggling to stay afloat in the waves while swimming near Al Raha on Friday morning.
Dileepkumar Raveendran, 39, leapt into the waves that swept away his children but managed to reach them and made sure he held their heads above water as he swam back to the shore safely, a family friend told Gulf News yesterday. However, he collapsed just after reaching the shore and handing over the children safely to his wife and mother-in-law, who were helplessly witnessing the incident, said the friend.
He suffered a suspected heart attack due to the shock of the incident; but we have to wait for the death certificate to confirm it.”
An Indian man died shortly after saving his two children who were drowning while swimming on the beach on Friday morning.
Dileepkumar Raveendran, 39, jumped into the waves that swept away his children, managed to reach them and made sure he held their heads above water as he swam back to the shore safely, a family friend told Gulf News on Saturday.
However, he collapsed just after reaching the shore and handing over the children safely to his wife and mother-in-law, who were helplessly witnessing the incident, said C.A. Deepak who reached the beach immediately in response to a frantic call from Raveendran’s wife.
“When we [with a friend] reached there around 11.50am, an ambulance also reached the spot. He [Raveendran] was lying on the beach and paramedics administered CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) but he could not be revived,” said Deepak, a family friend.
The ambulance took Raveendran’s body to Al Rahba Hospital where doctors confirmed his death. “He suffered a suspected heart attack due to the shock of the incident; but we have to wait for the death certificate to confirm it,” Deepak said.
The two schoolgoing children — his daughter Devika, 9, and son Aryan, 6 — were unharmed but shocked by their father’s death who was playing with them on the beach, while their mother Lakshmi and her mother were watching them. The family was enjoying a nice time as the children’s grandmother came on a visit from their native town of Kollam in the south Indian state of Kerala.
“They used to visit this beach [near Al Raha on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi city] very often. Probably it is their favourite place,” Deepak said.
He said the family left for the beach around 10.30am from their nearby home and might have played on the beach around one hour before the tragic incident happened.
Raveendran, a health and safety manager with a construction company in Dubai, had lived in the UAE for more than 10 years.
Friends said Raveendran was working with an Abu Dhabibased construction company, and moved to the Dubai firm one year ago.
“I had worked with him a year only; but he became one of my good friends. He used to call me every week, even if I did not call him. He valued friendships a lot,” Deepak said.
A colleague said Raveendran was a calm and quiet person who became a close friend of all colleagues. “That’s why we all colleagues have been with his family since we came to know about the incident. We still can’t believe it; we all are shocked,” said Noufal Mambarakal, an electrical engineer.
Repatriation of body
Mambarakkal said he and his colleagues were trying to complete the official formalities for repatriating the body by today.
The family members will accompany the body. Since Raveendran’s wife is a homemaker, the family may relocate to Kerala, the friends said.
A social worker who is helping the family for repatriation of the body said the body was kept at Shaikh Khalifa Medical City morgue.
The authorities are conducting forensic tests as part of the procedures related to unnatural death and the report is expected by Sunday or Monday, said M. M Nasser Kanjangad.
Once the report is available, the remaining legal procedures can be completed immediately to repatriate the body, he said.
C. A Deepak | Friend of the victim
Raveendran and his family were relaxing at the beach in Abu Dhabi as the children’s grandmother had come from India. Below: The beach near Al Raha in Abu Dhabi.