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22nd Feb 2024

Girl killed after she became trapped in sand hole she was digging at beach

Joseph Loftus

Awful news.

A seven year old was killed after her and her brother became trapped in a sand hole they dug at a Florida beach.

Sloan Mattingly was pulled from the hole after being buried for around 20 minutes.

Her brother was also rescued from the pit and was taken to hospital where he is in a stable condition.

Their father, Jason, confirmed the girl’s passing to Wane 15 and said that she was seven-years-old.

The siblings, alongside their mother and father, were visiting Florida from Fort Wayne, Indiana when the tragedy struck on Tuesday.

Witnesses said that the children were digging the hole and playing inside of it when it gave way.

Over a dozen desperate beachgoers tried to dig them out of the hole before firefighters arrived.

When Sloan was recovered from the sand she was found without a pulse and was declared dead at the hospital, according to officials.

The school that the siblings attended, Lafayette Meadows Elementary School, issued a statement on Wednesday reading: “It is with a heavy heart that I write this letting you know we lost a precious member of the Lafayette Meadows school family.

“Sloan Mattingly was a bright, sweet, loving 1st grade student in Ms. Vanbrocklin’s class. Sloan passed away on Tuesday. We will be talking with Ms. Vanbrocklin’s class, as well as Ms. Kilbourne’s class, as Sloan’s brother is a member of that classroom, on Thursday.

“Our administration team and counselors have support resources available for any student or staff member who is in need during this time of loss. 

“Please keep the Mattingly family in your thoughts and prayers. They have requested privacy at this time. We will pass along any further information the family wishes to share.”

A fundraiser has been set up to support the Mattingly family at this awful time.

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