Swimmer Killed In Sydney Shark Attack Identified As 35-Year-Old Brit

Emily Brown

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Swimmer Killed In Sydney Shark Attack Identified As 35-Year-Old Brit

Featured Image Credit: Simon Nellist/Facebook

A swimmer killed in a shark attack in Sydney has been identified as a 35-year-old Brit named Simon Nellist.

Emergency services were called to the scene at Buchan Point in Malabar, off Little Bay Beach, on Wednesday, February 16, following reports a swimmer had been involved in an attack.

Authorities searched the scene and 'located human remains in the water' about an hour after the incident took place.

Nellist was said to have suffered 'catastrophic injuries' and was unable to be saved, marking the city’s first unprovoked fatal shark attack in almost 60 years.

He was identified shortly after the incident, and was found to have been in the water to train for a fundraiser named the Malabar Magic Ocean Swim, which was set to take place this weekend.

Nellist is reported to have been a dive instructor who was about to be married to his girlfriend in Sydney, and who has family in the UK.

He apparently loved the water, with friend Della Ross telling 7News that 'everything that is connected to Simon is connected to the ocean.'

Ross added: 'The news hit us like a truck because he was one of the people who make this earth lighter'.

In the wake of Nellist's death, organisers of the Malabar swim decided to cancel the event.

In a statement cited by 7News, Event Director Robert Lloyd said: 'The organising committee extends our thoughts and prayers to the family of the swimmer who was so tragically taken yesterday. Out of respect for the swimmer and his family, and following wide consultation with Randwick Council and experienced, senior Surf Life Saving personnel, we believe that cancelling the 2022 swim is appropriate.'

Witnesses in the area saw the attack unfold on Wednesday, seeing Nellist 'screaming' and calling for help as he was being attacked.

One person who was on the scene recalled that Nellist was 'swimming across the headland and the shark came at full speed', adding: 'It’s very hard to talk about it because it happened like 10 metres off the rocks.'

Thirteen beaches, mostly across the east coast of the Sydney region, were closed the day after the incident as a precaution against further attacks. In an update shared today, February 17, Randwick mayor Dylan Parker said that there had been no further sightings of the sharks in the area, so beaches have been cleared to re-open from tomorrow.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677 

Topics: News, Australia, World News, Animals

Emily Brown
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