Tributes paid after girl, seven, dies after being buried by sand on Florida beach

Sloan Mattingly died while on hospital in Florida. (Picture: GoFundMe)Sloan Mattingly died while on hospital in Florida. (Picture: GoFundMe)
Sloan Mattingly died while on hospital in Florida. (Picture: GoFundMe)
Her brother has also been hospitalised by the "freak accident".

A seven-year-old girl has died after being buried by sand at a beach.

Sloan Mattingly was digging a hole on the beach with her brother Maddox in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Florida, when the hole collapsed. Beachgoers rushed to pull the pair out of the sand, but the youngster later died in hospital.

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Her brother is also in hospital in a stable condition. Now Sloan's mother, Therese, has launched a GoFundMe page where she has paid tribute to her daughter.

She said: "It took away our greatest 7.5 years. Don't tell us you're sorry for our loss - don't do that to us. We experienced the purest human being and we are forever changed by her.

"We love you beyond any stretch of the imagination. Our sweet Sloan. What we would give."

More than £100,000 has been raised for the youngster's funeral costs. The family were on holiday in Florida when the "freak accident" happened.

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Speaking to KFOR-TV, Sloan's uncle Chris said: "They were having a good time. Everybody was really excited to actually see them out there.

"Later we found out that after the sand had caved, [Sloan] kept trying to grab up Maddox's leg to get up out of the sand, and eventually he couldn't feel her moving anymore. The sand had been up to his chest, and he was screaming for help, and a lot of people did come and help.

"She was really fun to be around. She had a lot of energy and just totally innocent, and that's what hurts the most in all this."

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