'Kills me inside': White Island volcano survivor's last family photos

Brooke Rolfe
·News Reporter
·2-min read

A White Island volcano survivor has shared heart-wrenching photos a year after the disaster killed 14 Australians, including her sister and dad.

Stephanie Browitt was with her sister Krystal and dad Paul when their Ovation of the Seas cruise stopped at White Island/Whakaari off the coast of New Zealand on December 9 last year.

Stephanie, 24, on Saturday shared a series of photos from a few nights before the deadly volcano eruption when the Melbourne family “had no idea what was to come”.

“One year ago today on what we thought was just another night on our end of year family cruise we enjoy,” her post of photos from an Alice in Wonderland themed night read.

Paul and Krystal Browitt pictured before being killed in a volcanic eruption.
Paul (left) and Krystal (right) were killed in the White Island eruption last year. Source: Instagram

“It’s been extremely hard and painful to look back at these knowing we had no idea what was to come. Cruel is all I can think of.

“We were enjoying ourselves so much at the different restaurants, especially this magical one based off of Alice in Wonderland.

“To think we had no idea absolutely kills me inside, I just wish I could go back in time and make the most of our precious time that we had before everything happened.

“In all seriousness, please enjoy every moment with your [loved] ones. Make new memories and love every moment.”

Thirteen charged over White Island tragedy

Thirteen parties have been charged over the deaths of 22 people during the volcanic eruption on the New Zealand island in 2019.

The charges by New Zealand's workplace safety watchdog follow a major probe into the eruption of the Whakaari volcano.

Stephanie Browitt pictured before White Island eruption.
Stephanie Browitt shared this photo of herself from a few nights before the eruption. Source: Instagram

The blast happened as tours to White Island were taking place despite warnings of a heightened risk of eruption.

"This deeply tragic event was unexpected. That does not mean it was unforeseeable," WorkSafe NZ chief executive Phil Parkes said.

"There were 47 people on the island at the time of the eruption, all of whom suffered serious injuries and trauma."

Do you have a story tip? Email: newsroomau@yahoonews.com.

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play.