Victoria teen killed by falling tree died a hero, says fundraiser for family
The Victoria-area teen who was tragically killed by a falling tree while on a field trip to an overnight camp in Sooke last week has been identified.
The Thai Kids Club of Victoria says 13-year-old Tai Caverhill died while trying to save his friends on Wednesday, June 19 at Camp Barnard.
In an online crowdfunding campaign, the club said it was releasing the name with the blessing of Caverhill’s family.
“He was the first person who spotted the tree falling towards where he and his friends were walking; he alerted the group to run away,” according to the fundraiser.
“Sadly, he saved his friend’s lives but couldn’t save his own. Tai has always put other people’s needs before his own.”
According to Sooke RCMP, first responders arrived to the camp to find a boy pinned under the tree. He died at the scene despite attempts attempts to save his life.
A second teen was rushed to hospital with serious injuries.
The Greater Victoria School District confirmed the boy was a student at Lansdowne Middle School.
According to the GoFundMe campaign, Caverhill and his classmates were taking part in the school’s Year End Wilderness Camp.
The Thai Kids Club fundraiser said Caverhill was one of the first kids to joint the non-profit group, which focuses on preserving Thai culture and language among Victoria-area youth of Thai descent.
The campaign said Caverhill, who would have entered Grade 9 next year, was working in a local Thai restaurant to help pay his own expenses as his parents covered medical bills for his sister, who has a genetic illness called Tuberous Sclerosis.
“His kindness, loving, and caring for others significantly touched many groups of friends and families,” reads the page.
It says half the money will go to ease the Caverhill family’s financial burdens, with the remainder going to Tuberous Sclerosis Canada, to support other kids with the same illness as Tai’s sister.
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