A family of Naitata, Navua, is contemplating its future following the death of its sole breadwinner.
Anil Bikash Chand, 42, was one of the two fishermen who drowned after their boat capsized in Beqa Waters on Monday.
The other fisherman was Kishore Kumar, 55.
The third fisherman, Ratu Suliano Matanitobua (Junior), who survived the ordeal, said their boat capsized.
Mr Chand also sold fish at the Navua Market.
He is survived by his four children and his wife, Parmata Wati, 32, who is also eight months pregnant.
Ms Chand could not control her emotions when visited by the Fiji Sun at their home in Navua yesterday.
“I do not know how to raise our children now without their father,” Ms Chand said.
“Every time they go out fishing I don’t usually go and see him off. On Monday I went and stood beside the road and he kept looking at me until they went. He was very happy. I cooked his food and packed it nicely before he went,” an emotional Ms Wati recalled.
“When we were related the news of their drowning, I did not believe it. I knew he was still alive because he knew how to swim. Previously his boat engine broke down at sea, but he was able to return.
“Now no more. Life will be hard for us now. I do not know how to start our lives all over again because I don’t know how to face raising my children alone without their father,” she said.
The second victim, Mr Kumar, recently retired from J. S. Hill & Associates as a plumber.
He was at Navua to attend a family gathering on Sunday before joining the fishing trip on Monday.
His daughter-in-law, Saleshni Ram, said he always went fishing every time he visited their family.
“It is unfortunate that this trip had led to his death. He was always very hard working. It was hard to believe that he has gone,” Mrs Ram said.
Mr Chand and Mr Kumar’s bodies were discovered during a search party by fishermen around Navua at about 10am yesterday.
Meanwhile, Rt Suliano’s father, Ratu Romanu Matanitobua, said his son was still shocked and traumatised from the incident.
“What he told us was that the boat capsized after two big waves hit them. When the boat capsized, he said he clung onto it, one of them held onto a gallon and another was swimming,” Rt Romanu said.
“My son then turned the boat over and went inside again before taking out the water. He said after a while a Chinese vessel was sailing past him a few metres away so he called out to them. The fourth time he shouted they heard him and rescued him before brought him to Suva.”
Rt Romanu said he was thankful that his son survived because they had planned to celebrate his 21st birthday next Friday.
“I’m glad that he was brave even though the fear and thoughts of death came to his mind. I believe this is a huge lesson for him.”
Rt Suliano, his father said, had always been out fishing around Navua waters.
“This is the first time they have gone far from where he used to go fishing,” he said.
Source: fijiconnect lounge 10 dec 2015