Family mourns drowned son (6)

2010-02-11 00:00

A COPESVILLE family are mourning the loss of their six-year-old son who drowned in the Msunduzi River in Edendale on Saturday.

Vuso Khanyile, who lived with his grandmother in Edendale, was with his friends when they decided to go for a swim to escape the heat.

It is believed that they had empty 20-litre water containers, which they planned to float on. Vuso’s father Mondli Khanyile said that his son went without telling anyone.

“It is very difficult to accept this, as he is my only child. I was told that when the children got to the river, Vuso’s water container fell in and he tried to retrieve it. He slipped into the water and drowned.

“The other children ran for help. Eventually they came back with someone who tried to rescue him but he was already gone,” said Khanyile.

He said he fetched his wife, Nonjabulo, but did not give her the news at first.

“I fetched her and her friend and drove to Edendale. It was painful when we drove past my child’s school. Nonjabulo proudly told her friend that ‘this is the school that my child attends’. I just could not face her,” said Khanyile.

He described his son as a hyperactive child who liked taking chances. “All his life he enjoyed playing with his friends. He died because he tried to get his container so that he could also play.”

The Witness reporter was unable to speak to the child’s mother, who is still trying to come to terms with her son’s death.

A concerned resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that if the Edendale area had a swimming pool, like other areas, the children might not have gone to the river for a swim.

The police confirmed the incident. “We received a report about the drowning. When the police got to the scene, they found a six-year-old child lying on the side of the river bank. He was already dead.”

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