One of the photos of the diving team before tragedy struck. L to R: Christopher Boodram (only diver to survive), Kazim Ali Jr, Yusuf Henry, Rishi Nagassar and Fyzal Kurban.
RADHICA DE SILVA
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A campaign has been started to raise $700,000 for the legal and medical expenses of the lone survivor in the Paria diving tragedy, Christopher Boodram.

The campaign was started on Tuesday by a friend of the family, Michelle Ramkalawan Hosein.  It had received ten donations up to midday on Wednesday.

On the Gofundme page, the purpose of the funds was explained.

It read: “This campaign is created following the tragic diving incident that occurred on Friday 25th February 2022 involving five Trinidadian divers. The purpose is to raise funds for Christopher Boodram, the sole survivor of that diving horror to aid with all expenses which include medical in order to heal from psychological & emotional trauma, family expenses since he is unable to work for the foreseeable future and legal expenses.”

It further read: “Any assistance rendered for his healing and justice journey would help during his greatest battle yet. We thank you in advance for any assistance given.”

It ended with scripture taken from the Bible at Psalms 27.

Boodram has not spoken to the Guardian newspaper but a close relative of his, who asked this reporter to share the Gofundme fundraiser, said Boodram was currently seeing a private psychologist and needed financial support.

Asked whether LMCS and Paria Fuel had organised counselling sessions and if Boodram has access to these counselling sessions, the relative said yes.

He explained that Boodram preferred to see a therapist privately who was not affiliated with LMCS or Paria.

Asked whether Boodram would accept free counselling sessions from the National Family Services, the relative replied: “We didn’t know this service existed.”

He explained that Boodram inhaled toxic fumes in the pipeline and required specialized care.

“We have to seek second opinions from specialists and that is why we are raising funds,” he added.

Boodram is also seeking aid for legal expenses.

Guardian Media has sent questions to Ramlogan asking whether the money being raised for Boodram, represents his legal fees. However, no response has been forthcoming.

Boodram and four of his friends—Fyzal Kurban, Rishi Nagassar, Yusuf Henry and Kazim Ali Junior—were doing underwater maintenance works on a 30-inch diameter inactive pipeline on February 25th when they were sucked into a vortex. Only Boodram survived.

In a statement on March 2nd, Paria said it has arranged counselling services for Boodram. LMCS, in a subsequent press release, also said it had made available “professional services” to Boodram and the families of the four divers, to address their “state of mind.”

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Anyone wanting to support Gofundme to help Boodram can visit https://fundmetnt.com/campaign/help-support-christopher-boodram-lone-diving-tragedy-survivor