A Whakaari/White Island survivor whose husband and daughter died as a result of the volcanic eruption will not be able to attend the funeral of her beloved teen as she continues to recover from her severe wounds.

Adelaide-based lawyer Gavin Dallow, 53, and his 15-year-old step-daughter Zoe Hosking died when the popular tourist attraction off the Bay of Plenty coastline erupted underneath them on December 9.

Lisa Dallow, 48, was critically injured, suffering burns to almost 60 per cent of her body.

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Gavin was farewelled a month after the eruption, when more than 600 people attended his funeral at world-famous sporting venue, the Adelaide Oval.

His twin sister, and Lisa's sister in law, Meredith Dallow, told the Herald on Sunday that Zoe's funeral was still some weeks away as her family had decided to delay the ceremony so Lisa could have some involvement in the planning.

But, given her injures, she won't be able to attend.

Gavin Dallow died in the Whakaari / White Island tragedy, while his wife, Lisa, suffered extensive burns. Photo / Supplied
Gavin Dallow died in the Whakaari / White Island tragedy, while his wife, Lisa, suffered extensive burns. Photo / Supplied

"Obviously Lisa had no input into Gavin's funeral," Meredith, talking from Adelaide, said.

"So they [family] want her to be able to have a bit of a say, even though she won't be able to attend, in what she wants for Zoe.

"It means she hasn't been able to attend her husband's funeral, or Zoe's funeral. All she can do is watch the video."

Gavin, Lisa and Zoe made the fateful decision to visit White Island while on a family holiday on the Ovation of the Seas cruise ship.

The tragedy has so far claimed the lives of 21 people.

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The Dallow family has been told Gavin died in one of the helicopters taking some of the worst injured from White Island to Whakatāne for care.

Lisa was also rushed off the island on the afternoon of December 9.

Zoe's body was not found until a joint New Zealand Police / New Zealand Defence Force recovery mission four days after the eruption.

Lisa was later airlifted back to Melbourne for treatment to her life-threatening burns. She recently emerged from a coma to be given the heartbreaking news both her husband and daughter were dead.

An aerial view of Whakaari / White Island captured by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter several hours after the deadly eruption. Photo / Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust
An aerial view of Whakaari / White Island captured by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter several hours after the deadly eruption. Photo / Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust

Her brother, David Francis, has told Meredith it "took a while" for the shattering news to sink in, "then all of a sudden she kept saying, 'I can't believe Zoe is dead. I can't believe they are dead'."

She has since been able to tell loved ones what she remembers about the eruption.

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"She remembers the volcano exploding and she can remember telling everyone to run," Meredith said.

"And she remembers the rocks and everything hitting her on the back."

Lisa is no longer listed in a critical condition. But given the severity of her burns, she faces at least a further month in the burns unit at Melbourne's Alfred Hospital, followed by about six months of rehab.

"She is burnt from head to toe all on her back," Meredith said. "The only part of her body that is not bandaged is her face.

"She spends one full day a week in theatre having skin grafts and things done. Then she spends [more time in theatre] while they change all of her dressings.

"I think she has probably got it worse. I think, 'How would Gavin cope in that situation?'. And I think he is probably better off than what she is, because she has to deal with [everything].

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"At some stage she will have to go to the house where 10 years' worth of Zoe's things are."

Focus: Whakatane Mayor Judy Turner speaks to The New Zealand Herald about the effect on her town one month on from the fatal eruption of White Island. Video / Alan Gibson

Two months on from the tragedy, Dallow's family still struggle to comprehend something so disastrous could have happened in New Zealand.

"It's like going to another state in Australia, you don't think twice [about your safety] going to New Zealand."

Gavin's immediate family had no idea the trio were to visit White Island while on the two-week cruise.

Meredith first saw news coverage of the eruption while wrapping family Christmas presents on the night of December 9.

She looked at the itinerary and realised the ship the trio were on was the same one which had passengers caught up in the tragedy.

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That night she rang the Australian Consulate and was told that Gavin, Lisa and Zoe's names were on the list of passengers who visited White Island that day.

She also contacted Lisa's brother who was so concerned about their whereabouts that he had booked a seat on the first flight to Auckland the following morning.

An aerial view of Whakaari / White Island shows widespread debris on the afternoon of the eruption. Bay of Plenty Times photograph / George Novak
An aerial view of Whakaari / White Island shows widespread debris on the afternoon of the eruption. Bay of Plenty Times photograph / George Novak

Francis later located his critically injured sister in Waikato Hospital. But still no one knew what had happened to Gavin or Zoe.

Later that night, Francis rang Meredith to pass on the shattering news that a body had been located which had Gavin's "wallet in the pocket".

"I was like, 'Oh s***'," Meredith said.

"I had to tell mum and dad and said, 'They are not going to sleep another night not knowing'. We had gone 24 hours not knowing. It just wasn't fair to an 85-year-old man who was stressed to the limit [not knowing] . . . I thought I was going to get a call saying he had had a heart attack and dropped dead, the way he was."

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Gavin's body was taken to the mortuary at Auckland City Hospital two days after the eruption.

Meredith and a cousin were later flown to New Zealand by Australian officials to bring his body home.

They are yet to learn the nature of the injuries which took his life. Documents so far list the cause of his death as a "result of volcanic eruption".

More than 600 people attended the funeral of Whakaari / White Island victim Gavin Dallow at the Adelaide Oval. Photo / Supplied
More than 600 people attended the funeral of Whakaari / White Island victim Gavin Dallow at the Adelaide Oval. Photo / Supplied

Meredith remembered her twin brother as someone who was a popular man, and who was focused on his family.

Along with Lisa, he was well known in the Girl Guide Community in South Australia, helping with camps and other events Zoe participated in.

He was also a well-known member of the Rotarian and tennis communities.

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"If there was anything happening, or if I needed him, I could always ring him and he wouldn't think twice about coming," Meredith said.

"He was my only sibling. When my mum and dad die, it is just me now. I should have had my brother to look after me for another 30 years, too."

A tennis umpire, a moving tribute to Gavin was also made for him by colleagues at the Adelaide International. He was also due to take on officiating at the recent Australian Open in Melbourne.

Australian teen Zoe Hosking has been remembered as being a popular girl who was following her musical dream. Photo / Supplied
Australian teen Zoe Hosking has been remembered as being a popular girl who was following her musical dream. Photo / Supplied

Meredith also remembered Zoe as a "popular kid" who, as well as immersing herself in Girl Guides, was chasing her musical dream.

"She had just been accepted into the choir at her school and was taking off with her singing," she said.

Given the fact both Gavin and Lisa were very safety conscious, Meredith said her family were surprised they had decided to venture onto the live volcano.

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Tourists are rescued from Whakaari / White Island by tour guides shortly after the devastating eruption. Photo / Michael Schade
Tourists are rescued from Whakaari / White Island by tour guides shortly after the devastating eruption. Photo / Michael Schade

"They were so particular with everything and we said Gavin would do a risk assessment [before he decided to do things]," she said.

"In a way, I am surprised they did it. But they wouldn't have done even if there was a 1 per cent chance of something happening."

Meredith is among family members planning to return to New Zealand in December for the first anniversary of the tragedy.

She is adamant future tourism opportunities centring around White Island should not allow landings on the volcanic island that has caused her family so much pain.

"I would hope that it is never opened again to tourism," she said. "You would hope that is the end of tourism on the volcano . . . what happens if the same thing happens again?"