The parents of a 14-year-old surf lifesaving competitor who drowned off a Gold Coast beach in northeastern Australia said Friday no one was to blame for his death. Matt Barclay, from Maroochydore on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, disappeared Wednesday in rough seas while competing in a board race at the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships in Kurrawa. A full-scale search was launched and his body was found offshore just before 9:30am local time Thursday. Steven and Donna Barclay said they were distressed at criticism of lifesaving officials following their son’s death. They told The Courier-Mail, “We do not believe anyone is to blame for what happened and we totally support the officials and organisers of the event. Anytime someone goes into the ocean there is an element of risk. However, Matt was a young champion lifesaver and we had no concerns for his safety or the precautions in place at this event.” “Surf lifesaving is a big part of our lives and it was Matt’s passion. The bigger the surf the more he loved it. Words cannot possibly express how we feel at this time. There is nothing that can be said to change what has happened or take away our… Read full this story
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