Update: Saturday, Oct 28, 3-30 pm (Image and details courtesy: Mumbai Mirror)
Fourty-three-year-old Verghese John aka Sunny and his 37-year-old wife Shiny were travelling with their sons Ben, 13, and Joel, 9. They were accompanied by Verghese’s 41-year-old brother Kurien aka Saji, his wife 34-year-old wife Annie and their children Ria and Aaron — ages eight and four respectively. The mother of the two brothers, 71-year-old Ammukutty, was also in the car.
Ben and Ria are the only survivors. They were admitted into Sion Hospital, where their condition is said to be stable. The mothers of Mary and Annie will now take care of the children.
The family was coming back from Goa in their Fiat Uno when the truck crashed into the car from the back at around 7.30 am.
Verghese was a senior section engineer in Central Railway and Shiny was an income tax officer. They lived in Yogi Nagar, Borivli.
Kurien worked with a shipping company in the United States, and Annie was an administrator at Delhi Public School. They lived in Nerul, Navi Mumbai.
Anthony David, a friend of the family said that the two families would go on a short holiday together every year when Kurien came down.
The bodies have been brought to a mortuary in Mazgaon, and the funeral is expected to take place on Sunday at the Sewri cemetery.
First report, Saturday, 1-00 pm
by Janaki Fernandes for Mid-day
Mangaon / Mumbai, Oct 28: Cousins Ben Varghese (13) and Rhea Kurien (8) have no idea of the tragedy that has befallen them. The two children are the only two who have survived a road accident that wiped out seven members of their family yesterday.
The families of brothers John Varghese and Kurien John were returning from a holiday in Goa when their Fiat Uno was crushed under a fish trailer at Mandgaon, 100 km off Mumbai. The accident claimed the lives of the two brothers, their mother, their wives and two children.
At 7.30 am, the Mandgaon police station received a call that a Fiat Uno carrying nine people was crushed under a fish trailer. “When we reached there, we saw that seven had died on the spot. Two children, who were thrown a couple of feet away, had survived,” informed a police constable.
The families had gone on their annual trip to Goa on October 21.
“Every year when Kurien, who works on a cruise liner, returns home, the two brothers take their families and mother and go out of town,” informed Mary Babu, a cousin. The Fiat Uno belonged to Kurien and he was driving when the accident happened. Varghese worked in the Railways.
The Varghese family along with Mammukutty lived in Borivli, while the Kuriens lived in Nerul
At Sion Hospital, where the two children are admitted, the extended families and friends are clueless about what to do about the care of the children or the funeral arrangements.
“The entire family has been wiped out. So we still don’t know when the funeral will take place,” informed Babu Thomas, an uncle. Tentatively, the funeral has been scheduled for October 31.
According to doctors, Ben has suffered injuries on his spine, legs, spleen and hands while Riya has suffered multiple fractures on her limbs.
The driver of the fish tanker, Mubarak Afzal Mahaphule (41), has been arrested.