We’ve been touched by Xielo’s tragedy

FOR the last four months, the Maruziva family, who are based in Leicester, England, have been living in hell.

Their lives turned for the worse when their two-year-old boy, Xielo, slipped into a river and disappeared on February 18.

The family was taking an evening walk in the Aylestone Meadows nature reserve in Leicester when little Xielo slipped into the River Soar and disappeared.

His father, driven by paternal instincts to try and save his son, dived into the river but it was all in vain.

He could not save him and neither could he find him as little Xielo was lost to the river.

His brave father ended up sustaining injuries, in his attempts to save his son, and had to be rushed to hospital.

A massive operation was launched days later to try and locate the youngster, with police forces from across the UK sending specialist teams to help.  

But, the search was scaled back a month later after officers failed to find any trace of the toddler.

Leicestershire Police, however, said it would continue to look for Xielo, but the ‘additional resources’ from around the UK would no longer be at the scene.

Little did they all know that it would take four months before the body of the toddler would be found.

It’s a tragic story that has shattered the Leicester community and, even those of us who are faraway in this country, we have been touched by it.

They say no parent should bury their kids.

But we all know that this happens all the time because it’s something that we have seen again and again.

We didn’t know little Xielo but, through the words of his mother, we have a picture of him.

The boy who was full of life, cheeky, funny, friendly, smart, caring and independent.

“He never fails to make me laugh or smile and always loves a cuddle and some kisses,” his mother said.

“Xielo loves playing with his toys and watching cartoons including Bino and Fino. Me, his dad and the whole family are so heartbroken at what has happened. We thank everyone who has supported us and helped us during this time. We are extremely grateful for this.”

We are charmed by the massive support which the Maruziva family have been receiving from their community members.

Even their white community members have rallied behind them and given their full support in these trying times for the family.

In a world where we have seen the ugly side of racism, it’s comforting to see that not every white person is a racist and there are some good white people out there in the world.

In a world where some leaders have been trying to target migrants and even push them out of the countries they have chosen to live their lives, it’s refreshing when we see that there are white communities who embrace immigrants.

The support that the Maruziva family has been receiving from their community is comforting.

It won’t bring little Xielo home but it will help ease their pain.

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