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Girl Who Lost Family Reveals How She Escaped Sinking Car

“I unbuckled my belt and swam up.”

Soaking wet and with cuts on her feet, on April 2nd Chloe-May Kabealo ran along a rural road in Tumbulgum screaming.

At the time, witnesses told how the eight-year-old couldn’t say much apart from how her mum, sister and brother had gone into the swollen river in the family car.

Now, the young girl has spoken of her escape from the tragic accident for the first time.

“I tried to go up for air and then I just kept floating up out of something and then I got out,” she said at a fundraiser on Sunday night.

Sadly, her mum and siblings wouldn’t be so lucky.


The bodies of Stephanie King, 11-year-old Ella-Jane and seven-year-old Jacob would later be discovered by police divers in the flood waters.

Police say the mother spent her final breaths trying to save her three children.

Her husband, Matt Kabealo has told how he is “shattered” by the events of the day, but he is staying strong for Chloe-May.

“We’re just going to get through it the best we can,” he said.

More than $10,000 was raised at the Tweed City cinemas community event.

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