NZ funeral service for Brazilian student
Tue, 21 Aug 2012 7:13a.m.
The family of 17-year-old Brazilian exchange student Felipe Melo, whose body was recovered from the sea off New Plymouth at the weekend, hope to hold a funeral service in New Zealand.
Felipe was one of three people swept from Paritutu Rock during a school climbing expedition nearly two weeks ago.
The bodies of fellow student Stephen Kahukaka-Geyde, also 17, and instructor Bryce Jourdain, 42, are still missing.
Felipe's uncles Claudio Melo and Jose Martins told the Taranaki Daily News, through an interpreter, that his parents were in shock after receiving the news that their son's body was found.
"They were waiting for a miracle," they said.
Mr Melo and Mr Martins return home to Brazil today and they said Felipe's mother and father may yet make the trip to New Plymouth.
A decision is still to be made about when Felipe's body will go home, but the family hope a service can be arranged in New Plymouth.
A body was recovered from the water near Paritutu Rock on Sunday, and on Monday Inspector Frank Grant said the coroner was satisfied it was Felipe.
Felipe arrived in New Zealand in January and was attending Spotswood College.
Police are continuing their search for the missing climbers Insp Grant says they are determined to give families what closure they can.
“The primary purpose while we continue to search is just to try and bring their loved-ones back and put them at ease,” says Insp Grant.
"We are determined to return the bodies of Bryce and Stephen home to their families."
Insp Grant says the recovery of Felipe Melo's body has boosted the flagging spirits of search teams.
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21/08/2012 7:38:37 p.m.
Denzel Tustin wrote:
What a lovely young man, our sympathies to his family, what a shock, his memories will live with you forever and may you find peace and comfort to know we are all thinking of you.
21/08/2012 5:09:36 p.m.
Time Traveller wrote:
My sympathy to all concerned, I trust we can arrange a fitting farewell for this guest to NZ who left in such a tragic way so that his family will know he was made one of our own. RIP young man. Forever young and beautiful.
21/08/2012 2:06:33 p.m.
I feel that the right body has been found, at least the family and friends will have somewhere to greave. let hope they now find the other two. Such a sad thing to happen.
21/08/2012 11:16:37 a.m.
So sorry for his parents loss, so sad. But on the bright side at least he has been found for them to give one last cuddle, and he was enjoying himself being here in New Zealand even if it did go tragically wrong. He died happy.
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