• Thursday, 13 June 2024
The family of Hellen Kemunto, who drowned in Canada, begs for assistance in returning the body.

The family of Hellen Kemunto, who drowned in Canada, begs for assistance in returning the body.

The family of Hellen Kemunto, a young Kenyan woman who drowned while swimming in Canada on Thursday, is requesting assistance from well-wishers to return her body home for burial.

Hellen's father, John Nyabuto Kiyondi, age 55, claims that the family has no contacts in Canada and lacks the funds to transport Hellen's remains there.

"We are clueless on how to get there. All we can do is beg our allies and the government to assist us in bringing the body here. We have already accepted how she died, therefore should the body reach here, we will always be grateful to them, Mr. Nyabuto stated yesterday.

When a team arrived at the homestead a few minutes after 4 p.m. yesterday, it was a depressing sight. The house is in Getare village, in the Bomachoge Chache constituency of Kisii County.

A crowd had gathered outside Mzee Nyabuto's brick-walled home. They were watching the video of Hellen's tragic drowning. She had gone live on Facebook.


"Our lamp has been turned off," said Mr Nyabuto, who was with his wife, Ms Alice Oanda, and their only remaining daughter, Ms Riziki Monyenye. Four of Hellen's siblings were not at home.

"It happened on Friday morning. I had already left for the shamba when I felt the need to check my WhatsApp. I came across a chat that informed me that my daughter had died. I responded to inquire what was going on, but there was no response. As I struggled to accept what I had been told, I received a phone call from someone claiming to be her friend. "She told me about Hellen's death and then hung up," Mr Nyabuto said.

He rushed home to tell his wife the bad news, but before he could, another call came in from someone claiming to be Hellen's coworker.

Hellen drowned while swimming in one of the hotels, according to the colleague, and her body was recovered from the pool by Canadian authorities.

Hellen left home five years ago, according to Mr Nyabuto, and has not returned since. He went on to say that she had applied for and received a Green Card to live in Canada.


"She used to tell me in high school that she had a dream of going abroad." She came home one evening and told me she had won a 'Green Card' to travel to Canada. She asked me to assist her in raising her airfare.

"I went to a local chama, borrowed some money, and we saw her off with what I had saved," Mr Nyabuto explained.


Hellen was determined to see their family back in Kenya prosper while in Canada, according to the father, because she knew they were struggling.


"From the moment she arrived in Canada, she has communicated frequently with us." She has been extremely helpful. She has been paying tuition for her other siblings because I am only a peasant farmer who used to rely on sugarcane farming. "When sugarcane farming became unprofitable, I remained reliant on her," Hellen's mother explained.

Ms Riziki Monyenye, Hellen's only sister, graduated from Form Four last year. She was supposed to start university this month, and her sister had promised to pay her tuition; she is unsure what she will do now.


"I used to spend a lot of time online communicating with my sister." "I was truly shaken when I learned about her death," Riziki said.

According to the family, they are unable to make phone calls to Canada. They only communicate by relying on Hellen's friend to call back home.

"We have no relatives there." We can only communicate with her friends when they call. We have not planned her burial, but as time passes, we will know what comes next," Mr Nyabuto said, adding that Hellen had previously told him she was working to improve her education and professional qualifications.


During her spare time, she would take on extra jobs, budgeting what she could for her own expenses and sending the rest home to support her family.

Hellen's efforts have resulted in her family owning two dairy cows and a brick-walled house.

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