Family desperate to get son's body home after fall from Thailand hotel

·3-min read

The family of a 19-year-old man who was holidaying in Thailand when he tragically fell to his death is desperately trying to get his body home to Australia.

Joshua Connell, from Canberra, was holidaying in Phuket last week when he fell to his death from a six-storey rooftop. He was taking a gap year after completing high school.

The incident happened on Thursday, with CCTV from the scene showing the teen balancing along a wall near a swimming pool at Paripas Patong Resort.

As the wall transitions to a white rail, Josh slipped and fell 15 metres, landing on the roof of a business below.

Australian Joshua Connell died in Thailand in June this year. His family is now trying to bring him home. Source: GoFundMe
Australian Joshua Connell died in Thailand in June this year. His family is now trying to bring him home. Source: GoFundMe

Fundraiser started to help bring Josh home

Over the weekend a GoFundMe was set up to help Josh's family bring him back home.

"Words can't express the pain we are feeling for them," the GoFundMe says, in reference to the 19-year-old's family.

"On behalf of everyone concerned, I am so sorry for your loss and our sincere condolences are with you all."

The GoFundMe goes on to explain there are "significant expenses associated with bringing Josh home".

"These include the cost of repatriating Josh and travelling to Thailand. These are a large financial burden in addition to the cost of the funeral," the fundraiser says.

So far over $46,000 has been raised to help Josh's family.

It went on to say his parents would likely never ask for this kind of help, but given the circumstances, it would likely be very appreciated.

Speaking to the Canberra Times, Josh's step-father Steve Miller said during his gap year he "grew from a boy to a man", becoming responsible, while still being "fun-loving".

Mr Miller said Josh was by no means reckless, though he did have a strong sense of adventure.

CCTV shows Australian tourist Joshua James Connell, 19, walking along a wall at the side of the swimming pool. Source: Australscope
CCTV shows Australian tourist Joshua James Connell, 19, walking along a wall at the side of the swimming pool. Source: Australscope

His mother Michelle said she was blown away by the money that had been raised through GoFundMe, saying she knew her son had an impact on everyone he met.

"I don't think he had anybody he didn't like and I don't think anybody ever met him and didn't like him," she told The Canberra Times.

Magpies Junior Football Club paid tribute to Josh over the weekend.

"During the week Magpies Junior football club learnt of the passing of one of our own," the club said on Facebook.

"Young Josh Connell's life was tragically cut short. We are deeply saddened and will wear black armbands at all games this weekend for Josh."

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