A student who drowned in a tragic accident at a popular lake 200 km southeast of Perth has been remembered as a “humble and disciplined” person who had arrived in Australia with dreams of helping loved ones back in his native Kenya.
Family and friends are still coming to terms with the loss of Orville Tures, who died at Stockton Lake, near Collie, on September 10.
His body was recovered from the water by police divers the following day.
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Tures had joined his cousin and four friends on a Sunday drive when they came across the former open-cut mine and decided to take a dip.
“He didn’t know the dangers,” family friend Michael Kosgey told 7NEWS.com.au.
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“His cousin tried to save him but it was too late.”
Tures, 23, was a student at the Skills Australia Institute and had arrived in Perth in March.
Orville Tures drowned while on a Sunday out with his cousin and friends. Credit: Supplied
He was excited by the career opportunities here, was passionate about advancing his love for long-distance running and ultimately “wanted to change the lives of his parents and his siblings”.
“He was a very calm, quiet guy,” Kosgey said.
“He was humble, disciplined and just wanted to pursue his dreams in Australia.
“He was going to shine.”
Loved ones are about $1000 short in their $30,000 fundraising effort to repatriate Tures to Elgeyo-Marakwet County in Kenya, sponsor his cousin to accompany the body on the trip and contribute to a funeral service.
Kosgey said family had been overwhelmed by the influx of donations and support, particularly from WA’s Kenyan community.
A memorial service will be held in Perth on Wednesday and Kosgey is hopeful Tures’ body will be on a flight out of WA’s capital on October 2.
Stockton Lake is a former open-cut mine that was filled with water. Swimming is allowed but authorities say there are dangers. Credit: Explore Parks WA
The tragedy comes four years after Perth man John Rashidi died at the same swimming spot while using an inflatable pool toy.
Stockton Lake was once an open-cut mine and also includes a campground.
The lake is popular for boating and water skiing but authorities warn that visitors swim at their own risk “because, due to past mining activities, the water is mildly acidic”.
“Those with sensitive skin should limit their exposure to the water,” the Department of Parks and Wildlife warns.
“The water can suddenly become very deep in places and can be very cold, and submerged rocks are a hazard.”
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