Yessica's parents: Our loss is immense

NEIL RATLEY
Last updated 05:00 23/05/2014

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The family of a young Indonesian woman who died after she fell into an icy river on the Milford Track have urged its caretakers to ensure she is the last.

The parents of Yessica Asmin said they were devastated at the loss of their daughter and their loss was immense.

They arrived in Invercargill yesterday and formally identified their daughter's body.

An official from the Indonesian embassy said Yessica Asmin's parents accepted her death was a terrible accident.

It was a difficult time for them but they also understood "it was an unfortunate tragedy and are not looking to blame anyone", she said.

Asmin, 22, was swept into the Clinton River running off the famous Department of Conservation Great Walk on Monday while she was crossing a flooded creek.

Her body was found late on Wednesday afternoon, 48 hours after she was washed away in front of her partner, Sean Mcnabb.

The official also confirmed Mcnabb's family had arrived in Invercargill to be by his side at a time when he had "lost a part of himself".

Yessica had come to New Zealand for a trip and was only starting her young life, expecting to graduate with her masters degree in marketing from the University of New South Wales in June this year, they said.

They hoped their daughter was the last victim in that area of Fiordland.

They wanted those who looked after the Milford Track to take every possible step to prevent this kind of tragedy from happening again. The family offered a special thanks to Yessica's companions who attempted to save her and all those who helped in the search and afterwards.

The families of Yessica and Sean were able to meet up and talk with each other, the official said.

She described Mcnabb as being upset but also showing enormous courage and strength.

The Indonesian official said she did not believe the incident would damage New Zealand's reputation as a safe tourist destination.

The Indonesian embassy was working with police to help Yessica's parents get her home to Indonesia, the official said.

"We are assisting the family through a difficult time and organising to repatriate Yessica's body back to Indonesia as soon as possible," she said.

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