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Bushrangers Bay drowning victim identified


A single mother who died when she was swept off rocks into the ocean on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula has been remembered by a friend as “the most beautiful person on earth”.

Aida Hamed, 45, drowned off Bushrangers Bay on Wednesday afternoon after a freak wave washed her and three others into hazardous waters about 3.30pm.

Ms Hamed, of Epping in Melbourne’s north, was visiting the remote beach on a day trip, Victoria Police Inspector Janene Denton said.

It’s understood the Australia Post employee was washed into the sea with a female friend, 47, and her friend’s two daughters, 13 and 19.

The other three survived after the quick thinking by an off-duty lifeguard who dived into the water, with the group clinging to his surfboard.

Ms Hamed was pulled from the water but she could not be revived despite the efforts of emergency services.

One of her friends, Leyla Shi, told NCA NewsWire that Ms Ahmed was “the most beautiful person on earth”.

“She had a beautiful heart,” Ms Shi said.

“She was a single mother of four kids. She loved life and travelling – a beautiful soul.”

Inspector Denton said there would have been more deaths “without doubt” if not for the bravery of two men, aged 24 and 48, who dived in after the group.

The 24-year-old hero, an off-duty lifeguard, was able to use his surfboard as a makeshift flotation device that the struggling family clung to until police arrived.

A 48-year-old man also leapt into the water to help.

Neither men knew each other but didn’t think twice about working together to save strangers’ lives, Inspector Denton said.

“They’re (the rescuers) doing fine, it was huge effort on their behalf and a really brave act,” she said.

Inspector Denton referred to Ms Ahmed as the “aunty” of the two teenagers rescued at the scene.

“They’re still receiving care,” she said.

“They were just swept off by a really large wave. It’s a treacherous place, it’s a hazardous place – it can be calm and it can turn quite rough. I wouldn’t call it unusual.

“The size of the wave has completely taken them by surprise.”

An Australia Post spokesperson said the organisation was “deeply saddened” by Ms Hamed’s death.

“She was a much-loved member of Australia Post’s Lalor licensed post office. We extend our deepest sympathies to Aida’s family and colleagues at this sad time,” the statement said.

Inspector Denton said the incident was a reminder of the dangers involved in swimming at remote and un-patrolled locations like Bushrangers Bay.

“It’s actually very difficult for emergency services to get in there. Swim where the beaches are patrolled,” he said.



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