Aussie Children Farewelled After Jumping Castle Tragedy

By Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu is an Australian reporter based in Sydney. She focuses on the Australian economy, property, and education. Contact her at rebecca.zhu@epochtimes.com.au.
December 23, 2021 Updated: December 23, 2021

Australian boy Jye Sheehan, a victim of the Hillcrest Primary School tragedy, was farewelled on Dec. 24 by loved ones in Devonport, Tasmania.

The 12-year-old was one of six children who died after a freak gust of wind lifted the jumping castle 10 metres (30 feet) into the air during end of year school celebrations on Dec. 16.

He was remembered as the “funnyman of the class” with a happy smile who had a love for soccer and idolised Lionel Messi.

“He even made sure that he ate veggies, salad, and fruit to improve his soccer fitness,” the funeral celebrant said.

“He loved to learn and was a sponge for knowledge. He was super proud of his learning and would always share with anyone who would listen. You will be forever loved. Forever missed.”

Sheehan’s father, Glen, was unable to attend the funeral due to his own tragedy. He is currently in intensive care and had only recently emerged from a coma to learn of his son’s death.

“I know if Glen was able to share his memories it would be full of stories of wild adventures,” Sheehan’s mother Katrina said.

Sheehan’s schoolmate Zane Mellor, 12, was farewelled by loved ones yesterday in the same venue.

He was remembered as a dinosaur lover and avid gamer who was full of curiosity and eager for adventures.

Zane’s mother Georgie said he knew every dinosaur name and what period they came from.

“You grew up with me, held my hands and kissed my face in all the hard times. You were my man of the house always, my protector, my strength, my gamer,” Georgie said. “I love you Zane. No matter what the weather, we’re together.”

The surviving two children have been moved out of intensive care after their condition improved from critical to stable.

David Best, the uncle of one of the surviving boys, said his nephew had “put up one hell of a fight.”

“Well done little dude and enjoy that requested [pizza]. So proud of you. Stay strong and see you soon,” he said in a post on Facebook, which featured a photo of Declean eating a pizza in his hospital bed.

“My heart still breaks for the family’s that lost their loved ones.”

AAP contributed to this article.

Rebecca Zhu
Rebecca Zhu is an Australian reporter based in Sydney. She focuses on the Australian economy, property, and education. Contact her at rebecca.zhu@epochtimes.com.au.