A mother has described how she was forced to helplessly watch as her 2-year-old daughter and husband drowned as she desperately battled to stay close to them after they were swept into the sea.

Lisinda Bruynius was pulled under the water by a "freak wave" alongside her husband, Rudy, and "beautiful baby girl" McKayla during a family fishing trip in Cornwall last year, the Daily Telegraph reports.

Eight months after the tragic accident, the mother-of-three relived watching her husband successfully pull their daughter out of a pram while in the water - only for the pair to be dragged away from her.

She also recalled seeing her husband's unconscious body floating in the water, leaving her screaming: "I don't know where my baby is".


In an emotional account, which came as an inquest into their deaths concluded, Bruynius said her life "changed forever" when the sudden storm broke upon Fistral Beach in Newquay.

"We were fishing off rocks when the sea conditions changed so quickly and caught us out," she said. "I do not know how Rudy managed to free McKayla from her buggy but they were in the sea together, with McKayla being in Rudy's arms about an arm's length from me.

"Nothing was said between us. We were both doing our best to stay afloat. I could hear Rudy screaming for help and I could see and hear Tyrone and Damian [their two sons] screaming. I shouted to the boys to move back.

"Within no time I had floated 15 feet [4.5m] away from Rudy. I could see a man on the rocks who was shouting at us to preserve our energy and that help was on the way. There was no way anyone could have got to the three of us.

"I glanced across to Rudy and could see that McKayla was no longer in his arm. And I could still hear him screaming something.

"As I got closer to him I could see that he was not conscious and there were no signs of McKayla. I can recall shouting 'I don't know where my baby is'."

Her recollections of the fateful evening came hours after Cornwall Coroner's court ruled their deaths had been a "tragic accident" caused by a "dramatic" change in weather conditions.

Held earlier in the day, the inquest heard how eyewitnesses were alerted to the family's screams after seeing waves of reaching 3m rolling in towards the beach.


Alerted by passersby, the coastguard was rushed to the scene, where the Bruynius were rescued by a lifeboat. McKayla was discovered a short time later.

However, the 15 minutes spent submerged proved fatal for Bruynius, a self-employed landscape gardener who was originally from South Africa, who died later that night at a hospital in Truro.

Their daughter McKayla, who had been strapped into a pushchair when the freak wave hit, died four days later at Bristol Children's Hospital.

Post-mortem examinations confirmed that both Brunius and his daughter had died from the effects of drowning.

Lisinda Bruynius did not attend the hearing but afterwards thanked the emergency services for their "relentless" determination to save her family, adding that she hoped other families would "learn from our tragedy".