A heartbroken dad who jumped into a pool to try to save his nine-year-old daughter from drowning during a swimming lesson says he “would have done anything for her”. Michaela Gonda, who had a heart condition, was proudly showing off her skills to her parents when she suddenly disappeared from the surface of the water.

Dad Mike, who was watching from the sidelines with his wife, Yvonne, immediately dived in to try to rescue his child, but it was tragically too late. Speaking to the Irish Independent, the father said: “She was at her swimming class yesterday and myself and my wife Yvonne were watching her. She was calling ‘mammy, look at me’ ‘daddy, can you see me swimming?’ and we were watching her.

“Then she disappeared and we couldn’t see her anymore. My wife asked ‘where’s Michaela?’ and I ran over to the pool where I saw her underwater. I jumped into the pool to save her, I would do anything for her.”Michaela had been taking part in a swimming class at the Tallaght Community School Sports Complex in Dublin on Friday nigh. Dublin Fire Brigade and paramedics were called when she became ill at around 7pm, and she was transferred to our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin, where she was pronounced dead.

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