Teacher died in Cornwall’s freak paddleboard crash, inquiry finds

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Simon Flynn recovering from the effects of Covid while trapped under a moored boat, partner notes

An investigation has heard that a teacher taking a break by the sea to recover from the effects of the Covid-19 died in a freak paddleboard accident when he was stuck under a moored boat. Simon Flynn jumped from his paddleboard when the current took him to the boat in a Cornish estuary.

Chia Appleby, Flynn’s girlfriend, who was paddling with him at the time, said that the couple went to Cornwall last August for a weekend trip. The 42-year-old Flynn, Appleby said, suffered from Covid-19 and battled with chronic fatigue and insomnia, but was willing to paddle.

She said her husband, from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, had enjoyed many water sports, was a strong swimmer, and felt comfortable in the water. The inquiry found that the tide was low in Truro, Cornwall.

It was a calm, sunny day, and both wore wetsuits as they paddled to some sandbars across the estuary near Rock, where, according to Appleby, they spoke and kissed and cuddled. The current moved them towards the moored boat on the way back, and Appleby said that Flynn jumped from the 4-meter inflatable. “On the way back, the current was pushing them toward the moored boat, and Appleby said Flynn jumped from the 4-meter inflatable. ”

I could see that he was moving under the boats.

I could see that his whole body was underneath the boat. Appleby leapt to assist in the water, but could not swim against the current and yelled for help. Charlie Palmer, financial services operations manager, saw the incident from the Rock sailing club, where he was having lunch. He paddled out, dove in and untied the thread, dragging Flynn to the surface. Bryn Phillips, Harbor Master, said there were 300 moorings in the area and this was the first incident of its kind. Flynn drowned and sustained a minor head injury, an autopsy showed. Acting Chief Coroner Andrew Cox concluded that the death of Flynn was accidental: “It is with immeasurable sadness that we, Simon’s family, have to announce that he has tragically passed away as a result of a freak accident while he was having the time of his life in Cornwall. He loved his job, he loved working and he loved developing his students.”

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