Fundraiser started for family of young man who drowned in Lynn Canyon

A fundraiser has started to help a Surrey family send a young man’s remains back to India after he drowned in Lynn Canyon waters last week.

On July 4, Harman Singh Sandhu, identified by police as a man in his 20s, died after cliff-jumping near Twin Falls. Police say Sandhu did not know how to swim, had never cliff-jumped before, and drowned.

Now Sandhu’s cousin and brother are asking for help to bring his body home to Jaipur, India.

“Any help is appreciated,” said a man identifying as Sandhu’s brother, Jaskaran Singh, in a post on Reddit.

“We are in debt due to loans for his studies in Canada and currently don’t have the necessary funds required to bring his dead body back home to India. The gofund[me] is setup by my cousin in Canada.”

An organizer on the GoFundMe page says Sandhu was “a beloved member of our community, known for his kindness and vibrant spirit.”

Jatinder Singh Chahal, one of the organizers of the GoFundMe campaign, was Sandhu’s roommate.

“I’m still in denial and I don’t think it was supposed to end like this,” Chahal said.

“He was a really nice guy, a kind person. He would help everyone. He was a fun-loving guy.”

The family is seeking $20,000 to fly Sandhu’s body home to India for a dignified funeral in time for religious Sikh rituals.

Chahal says it is taking a long time to bring him back home because authorities have not released Sandhu’s body.

“After death you have to complete the rituals in 13 days, but it has already been 10 days, and it has been a lot of pressure on the family,” he said.

“So for the future, the authorities should hand over the body as soon as possible.”

According to North Vancouver Fire Rescue, in the last five decades, there have been over 35 accidental deaths in Lynn Canyon — and over a dozen are related to cliff-jumping and swimming.

Although it is not an illegal activity, there are fences and warning signs alerting people of the inherent dangers of cliff-jumping in Lynn Canyon.

As of Friday afternoon, the GoFundMe had raised $9,527 through 142 donations.

— With files from Angela Bower.

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