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Drowning verdict for Churchstoke businessman

Created on 03/08/2017 @ 18:42
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The inquest of a Churchstoke man who died while trying to save his daughter in the sea ruled that he died as a result of drowning.

Simon Pearson, 47, his daughter Lily and his father-in-law Anthony McGregor got into difficulty in the sea off the coast of Italy where the family were holidaying last month. Italian beach worker Martino Maggi also died after going to their aid.

The family, from Old Church Stoke, near Churchstoke, on the Shropshire border, were visiting the beach at a resort on the south coast when tragedy struck on the morning of July 18 the Shropshire Star reports today.
Coroner's Officer Julie Hartridge told the hearing that Mr Pearson, the managing director of Bishop’s Castle building materials firm Jesmonite "was a healthy man" and an experienced swimmer.

"On July 18 he died in tragic circumstances while in the sea at Lido Bosco Verdi resort in Italy," she said.

Mr Pearson's family did not attend the hearing at Shirehall in Shrewsbury, but a statement by his wife Emma was read aloud by Mrs Hartridge.

She said she had noticed a red flag on the beach and after a discussion with her father, a decision was made to go in although she told her father not to venture too far.

Mrs Pearson said she realised that Mr Pearson and his daughter Lily had drifted several metres from the shore and she heard him shouting to her to help him.

Mr Maggi and another beach work went to his aid, but Mr Maggi was also drowned. The other man, known as Ibrahim, brought Lily safely to shore, but told Mrs Pearson afterwards that he had to make a choice as he was unable to help both of them back.
She said that the doctors in Italy said Mr Pearson's lungs were filled with water and that he had not died of a heart attack.

Shropshire Coroner Mr John Ellery recorded a conclusion that Mr Pearson's death was caused by drowning.

"It was clearly an accident. This was a double tragedy and our condolences to both the Pearson family and Martino's family in Italy," Mr Ellery said.

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