The heartbroken grandmother of the 3-year-old girl crushed to death when a war monument toppled on Saturday evening said her family is "devastated and shattered" by the terrible accident.

Indy Lee Henderson from Campbelltown died when the sandstone block inscribed with "Lest We forget" tipped at the Blackhead Bowling Club at Hallidays Point, near Taree on the New South Wales mid-north coast, the Daily Telegraph reports.

The horror happened in front of the little girl's mother, Tamica Harrower, and grandmother Shiralee Walker, who was celebrating her 50th birthday with family and friends.

"Four people lifted it off my granddaughter, my daughter pulled her out of the monument and passed her to me, she was unconscious," Walker said.

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"We were both very hysterical, I went into a major panic attack and collapsed.

"She's devastated and shattered by what's occurred."

Indy Henderson is remembered as a bright little girl who would light up a room. Photo / Channel 7
Indy Henderson is remembered as a bright little girl who would light up a room. Photo / Channel 7

Walker described her granddaughter as a vivacious girl who "lit up the room".

"She was an absolutely large personality, bubbly happy strong-willed, cheeky and independent," she said.

Michael Styles, who tried to save Indy, was passing by the Black Head Bowling Club at the time when he noticed a large group of people in panic around the stone monument by its entrance.

Styles said he saw the memorial sandstone block overturned, a small girl apparently unconscious, and a flurry of panicked family members attempting to administer CPR while others cried for help.

The accident happened outside the Black Head Bowling Club. Photo / Google
The accident happened outside the Black Head Bowling Club. Photo / Google

"It was chaos. There were lots of family members, it was a large family gathering for a birthday party so there was a lot of people and lots of children," he told news.com.au.

"I told them I was an experienced first aider. I took over the breaths and someone else took over on the compressions."

Styles said a lot of people were around and many appeared to be "in a bad state of shock".

The local man said he sent some of the crowd across the road to try to get them away from the little girl and subdue their panic.

He stayed with the family until an ambulance arrived about 15 minutes later, and took the girl to Manning Rural Referral Hospital. She was pronounced dead on arrival.

"She was only a very little girl, very tiny," Styles said.

Police established a crime scene near the monument and are preparing a report for the coroner.

Superintendent Peter Thurtell told ABC that a group of children were playing near the war memorial in front of the club.

"The deceased child was not climbing on top of the war memorial. Another child was climbing on top of the war memorial and it appears as though the weight of that child brought it down and another girl was standing behind that slab," Thurtell said.

"We can't speculate as to why it fell over. It appears weight was an influencing factor."

Styles said there was nothing to indicate how the weighty structure might have come unstuck.

He said children regularly climbed over the monument.

"It was just a freak thing," he said.

The stone monument, which sits just metres from the bowling green at the front of the club, has become a makeshift shrine with locals leaving floral tributes.

Police said Indy's family was visiting the area on holiday, and they were believed to have
family in the area.

Police from Manning-Great Lakes Local Area Command have passed on sympathies and
condolences to the family.

Friends have set up a GoFundMe page to help the devastated Sydney family.

Officers have asked anyone who witnessed the accident to come forward.