News

Coroner identifies man who drowned in Pitt Meadows

A bouquet of roses and messages are left a memorial for Jagit Khangura, aged 44, of Port Coquitlam, who drowned Aug. 4 while swimming in the Alouette River in Pitt Meadows. - Colleen Flanagan/The News
A bouquet of roses and messages are left a memorial for Jagit Khangura, aged 44, of Port Coquitlam, who drowned Aug. 4 while swimming in the Alouette River in Pitt Meadows.
— image credit: Colleen Flanagan/The News

A plush penguin, bouquets of flowers and heart-breaking messages adorn the railing of a bridge across the Alouette River, not far from where a father drowned Monday in Pitt Meadows.

B.C. Coroner's Service identified the 44-year-old as Jagit Khangura of Port Coquitlam.

Khangura was swimming with his family near the Silver Bridge on Harris Road Aug. 4 when he suddenly disappeared under water around 5:50 p.m.

Taped to the bridge are messages from his daughters, son and nephew, penned in pink ink.

"Why did you have to go, I saw you go right in front of my eyes," wrote Harpreet.

"We have to be strong for mom."

Jyothi's message to her dad read: "We will make you proud and take care of mom. You left us to soon, Dad, your little girl still needs you."

His son Kevinjit hoped his dad "finds his way to God."

His newphew Gagan called him "Cha Cha", which means uncle in Punjabi. "I will miss you so much," he wrote. "All I can remember is all the good times we had together."

The B.C. Coroners Service and RCMP continue to investigate Khangura's death but have yet to determine why he drowned while trying to swim across the calm river.

Although emergency personnel from the fire department, police and Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue arrived on scene shortly after Khangura's family called 911, he could not be saved.

Barb McLintock with the coroners service said Khangura was located on the river bottom around 8:30 p.m.

His body was brought to the surface by a diver from the Canadian Coast Guard.

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