Connect with us

World

A christmas story – girl reunited with family from Tsunami 2004

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Indonesian girl swept away by 2004 tsunami found alive
Phuket Gazette

An Indonesian girl who was thought to have died when a huge tsunami devastated the island of Sumatra in December 2004, has been found alive and reunited with her parents, local media reported on Thursday.

Wati, who is now 15, went missing in December 2004 when a tsunami hit Ujong Baroh village in West Aceh Regency, which is located in Aceh province and was among the hardest-hit areas. The girl, 8 at the time, was being taken by her mother Yusniar to higher grounds along with her two siblings, but the girl was swept away by the rushing waters.

After searching for her missing child, Yusniar eventually gave up and accepted that her daughter had been killed by the tsunami. Both Yusniar and her other two children escaped the tsunami unharmed after they reached higher grounds.

But on Wednesday, Wati arrived at a coffee shop in Meulaboh, the capital of West Aceh, where she sat in silence. According to the Antara news agency, people initially thought the girl was a beggar but later explained that she had arrived from Banda Aceh in search of her home. However, she did not know how as she could not remember the names of her parents, although she knew her grandfather’s name is Ibrahim.

A person at the coffee shop, who is an acquaintance of Ibrahim, heard her story and made an immediate connection to Wati. He went on to take her to Ibrahim, and her family was able to identify her by a small mole and scar above her eyebrow, which she got when she was six years old.

It was not immediately known what happened to Wati after she was washed away by the tsunami, Antara reported, but she reportedly wandered to different districts in the province of Aceh throughout the years. Her mental and physical condition were not immediately known.

On December 26, 2004, one of the most powerful earthquakes ever recorded struck off the west coast of Sumatra in Indonesia. The 9.1-magnitude earthquake unleashed a deadly tsunami, striking scores of countries in the region. In all, at least 227,898 people were killed.

Indonesia was the worst affected area with an estimated death toll of at least 170,000, although some estimates have put the death toll in Indonesia alone at as high as 220,000. Aceh was the hardest-hit region, and some areas are still struggling to recover.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Phuket4 mins ago

Phuket officials in last-minute scramble to fix sandbox hiccups

Tourism9 hours ago

TAT claims 1,500 travellers arriving in Phuket July 1

Coronavirus (Covid-19)11 hours ago

5 million Moderna vaccines for Thailand, half of expectation

Phuket Sandbox July 1st

days
hours
minutes
seconds

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

Covid-19 round-up for expats 3: Are countries helping Thailand?

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

Covid-19 round-up for expats 2: Will your country give a vaccine?

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

Covid-19 round-up for expats 1: Should you travel to Thailand?

Thailand15 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Lockdown for BKK? Demonstrations back on, Pathum Thani shooter arrested

Thailand15 hours ago

Myth busted: Drinking alcohol does not kill Covid-19 – VIDEO

Phuket16 hours ago

Power outages coming to Kathu, again

Tourism16 hours ago

List of countries by Covid-19 risk level, classified by Thailand’s DDC

Thailand16 hours ago

Legalised marijuana up next? Courts get closer to legalising kratom

Phuket17 hours ago

Phuket police raids nab suspects for allegedly having guns, drugs, kratom

World18 hours ago

Antivirus legend John McAfee apparent suicide in Spanish prison

Coronavirus (Covid-19)18 hours ago

Thursday Covid Update: 4,108 new cases; provincial totals

Coronavirus (Covid-19)19 hours ago

Bar girls in Pattaya arrested for allegedly violating Covid restrictions while live streaming

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending