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British boy donates 4500 for orphaned tsunami children

A nine year old British boy who miraculously survived the Boxing Day tsunami which struck Sri Lanka, yesterday reached out to the tsunami orphaned children in the country with a gift of 4,500 Sterling Pounds collected from his friends in a London Primary School.

Toby Carroll of Devonshire High School presenting the cheque for 4500 pounds collected by his classmates for tsunami relief funds to Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar.    Picture by Nimal Navaratne

In a moving scene which left not a single dry eye among those present, Toby Caroll presented the cheque to Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar who is on a visit to Britain to say "thank you" to the British public for their magnificent response during Sri Lanka's hour of peril.

The event took place at Arunde House. The money was raised through what is termed a Bob a Job campaign engaged in by the 400 co-eds (aged three to 13) of the Devonshire House School in North-West London.

For Toby's mother Jackie, though the Caroll family could not do enough for the survivors knowing how lucky she had been to be counted among the parents to see their children alive following that cataclysmic moment.

Jackie Caroll nee Roche incidentally is a descendant of the well known Maurice Roche business family in Sri Lanka.

Recounting the events of that fateful day at the Paradise Beach Resort in Mirissa, Jackie said things happened so fast that she could not picture the happening.

One moment she and her husband were on the top floor cabana and the next thing she knew was they were being swept away by giant waves.

"The cabana suddenly gave way where my husband and I stood and we all fell in a heap. I suddenly saw Toby being held by a Dutch couple and I yelled 'run'."

Later, she saw the Dutch couple running towards a nearby hill holding Toby. Although the memory of that scene keeps haunting her everyday, she still loves Sri Lanka and is planning to make the trip with her family in a couple of months.



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