Brighton man dies after trying to save dogs from sea and daughter wades in to help

Posted On 08 Jan 2011 at 9:33 pm

A 13-year-old girl from bravely Brighton tried to save her father who died after being pulled from the sea this afternoon.

Her father, Kevin Reynolds, 52, of Queen’s Park Road, Brighton, went into the water after their two dogs near the Palace Pier.

He was plucked from the rough sea by the RNLI Brighton lifeboat crew and flown to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Kemp Town by the Solent Coastguard helicopter.

Mr Reynolds, who has five children, died in hospital three hours after the lunchtime rescue.

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His daughter was distressed but physically uninjured.

One of their dogs came ashore although the other dog is still missing.

Mr Reynolds and his daughter were walking their dogs, believed to be Jack Russells or terriers, shortly after midday across from the Queen’s Hotel.

When the dogs ran into the sea near the East Street groyne Mr Reynolds went into the water to try to rescue them.

His daughter saw that her father was in difficulty and went into the water to try to help him.

Sussex Police said that at least two people went into the sea and helped the girl to safety but were unable to reach Mr Reynolds.

The Brighton lifeboat plucked him from the sea 30 to 50 yards offshore in waves with a breaking height of 6ft to 10ft and in a wind of up to 30 knots.

Chief Inspector Helen West, of Sussex Police, said: “This is a truly tragic event and my sympathies go to the family.

“Members of the public bravely entered the sea to try to rescue the father and daughter.

“The man was difficult to reach and eventually pulled from the water by the lifeboat and airlifted to hospital.

“Generally dogs eventually return to their owners after entering water and it is certainly not worth the risk for individuals to go into the sea especially during adverse water conditions.”

Mark Bell, the Brighton inshore lifeboat helmsman, said: “It was the roughest conditions I’ve seen in a long time and on scene was a very inhospitable place to be, close in shore, with heavy breaking surf, and made all the worse by the terribly sad events that led to us being called.”

  1. Leo Barraclough Reply

    What a terrible tragedy. My heart goes out to that poor family. The council should do more to warn people about the dangers of going into the sea in rough conditions.

  2. Hannah Reply

    i was there and it was tragic and my heart goes to all those who lost him.

  3. Valerie Paynter, saveHOVE Reply

    I agree with Leo Barraclough. Mr. Reynolds was probably confident of his own strength and ability to handle the conditions. But was the tide coming in or going out?

    We get signage for humans swimming but not for dogs. Normally this is not necessary and we should not overreact because I’m not aware of a situation like this ever happening before. A one off?

    I’m sure the whole city is hurting now. It is deeply affecting to hear of this tragedy.

  4. christie Reply

    I was there for the rescue was very sad, took a very long time to rescue Mr Reynolds who was thought to have died by on lookers. My heart goes out to the whole family including his young daughter who had to witness her drown father. R.I.P completely broke my heart and played on my mind for the day. I just wanted to swim in and rescue him

  5. Simon ( West Yorkshire ) Reply

    We were their and watched the rescue ,( my first time in Brighton ) the sea was very “angry” . Our thoughts are with this family in these sad times . I still cant get the images out of my head of seeing Mr Reynolds in the water and the attempts to rescue him by the very brave guys from the R.N.L.I , at one point I thought that they themselves would need to be rescued .
    Our hearts go out to Mr Reynolds Family in these sad times .

  6. Kpx200 Reply

    I knew Kevin as I am good friends with his son. He was a lovely man and it is terrible that he died while trying to save the dogs. Everyone will be thinking of Kevin and our hearts go out to the family through these tragic times. Rest In Peace Kevin Reynolds.

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