The three orphaned survivors of a Christmas Day crash that killed their parents have returned home from hospital.
Synthia, 5, Bevan, 2, and Charley, 1, were stranded for 55 hours with the bodies of their parents, Cindy Braddock, 25, and Jake Day, 28, while they waited for help just 10km from their home in Kondinin, Western Australia.
Incredibly, the children only suffered minor injuries and dehydration. They have spent the last week in Perth Children’s Hospital.
Speaking to 7News at a Perth Park on Saturday, the children’s step-grandfather Richard Parker confirmed they would be living with their nan Annette Day.
“The next goal is to just keep looking after the kids,” Parker said.
The family had made the 200km journey back home at about 1am on Christmas morning from a family event in Northam.
Braddock and Day were killed when their car rolled over into an embankment just 10km from their destination.
Day’s cousin Michael Read told reporters the heroic actions of the eldest child, Synthia, might have saved the lives of her two younger siblings.
“The 5-year-old became unstuck in the vehicle and she then got the 1-year-old out of the car seat, then they were stuck in the car for 55 hours in 30C heat,” Read told 7 News.
“It would have been hard for the three children to be in the car for that whole time. Nobody knows what they went through.
“And if it wasn’t for the 5-year-old undoing the buckle of the 1-year-old’s car seat, he wouldn’t be with us today.”
A desperate search was underway before the children were found two days later and flown to Perth in a rescue helicopter.
A GoFundMe fundraiser has raised almost $150,000 (A$140,000) in donations to go towards the funerals of the young parents and the ongoing support of their children.