Tributes have been paid to a grandfather who long while snorkelling on a Caribbean sail with his family.
Andrew Evans, 60, was on a family steam holiday on plank P&O’s Britannia ship.
The father-of-two and grandfather-of-one from Llanelli in Wales was part of a group that went snorkelling in St Kitts.
He lost awareness during the snorkelling trip to Peninsular Cove on 27 March and was brought out of the water.
Although another traveller attempted to revive him, he was later marked dead. It was later found that he died of cardiac arrest.
Mr Evans had worked in IT and tech support for Dyfed County Council, which became Carmarthenshire Council in 1996.
He was also a member of local theatre groups for decades, including the Academy Theatre Group and Llanelli Little Theatre.
Friend and council colleague Ann Benjamin, who performed with Mr Evans in several theatre shows and is godmother to one of his children, said: “He was the sort of person where, if you asked him to do something, he would do it.
A Fond Farewell to a Grandfather who Lived Life to the Fullest
“He played many parts in the shows – he liked playing the panto animal, he liked the interaction with everyone, that’s what he wanted – he had a lot of fun. He gave most things a go.
“You couldn’t ask for a better friend; he was there if you needed him; you didn’t have to ask twice. That was at work, at home, in the theatre, anything to do in your life.
“Sometimes he would say yes to doing things, and you’d think, ‘Andrew, you haven’t got time to do this’, but he would always find time, which was the fantastic thing about him.
“He was well-loved by so many people. He was a gentleman and so thoughtful to everyone around him.”
Friend David Hurford said: “Many different people much loved him. He was a wonderful family man and a doting grandad, and he loved being a grandad.
“He was very community minded and always trying to do something to help people in the community.
At the time, the ship was docked in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Last October, Annello, 51, was charged with negligent homicide by Puerto Rican authorities.
“I took a plea deal today to try to help end part of this nightmare for my family, if possible,” Anello, of Valparaiso, Indiana, said in a statement. “The support they continue to give me has been overwhelming, and I can’t tell you how grateful I am for them.”
Michael Winkleman, an attorney for the family, announced the plea deal in a statement on Wednesday. He said Anello would not serve jail time as part of the plea deal. (Winkleman is not representing Anello in his criminal charges but is representing the family in a civil lawsuit against Royal Caribbean.)
“This decision was a tough one for Sam and the family, but because the appeal agreement included no jail time and no admission of facts, it was clear the plea deal was in the best notice for the family so that they could close this horrific chapter,” said Winkleman, “and turn their focus to mourning Chloe and fighting for sail passenger safety by elevate awareness about the need for all common bearer to adhere to window fall prevention laws plan to protect children from falling from windows.”
A Tribute to His Legacy
The Puerto Rico Department of Public Safety has yet to respond to a comment request, but Winkleman said Anello would serve his probation in Indiana.
The grandfather had always insisted he did not know the window was unbarred when he lifted his granddaughter to it and that he had wanted her to bang on the glass as she did during her older brother’s hockey games.
“From my perspective, at the moment the freak occurred, it was as if this wall of protect glass vanished,” wrote Anello in an emotional statement about how his granddaughter’s death has changed his life. “I was in complete disbelief, and it was an ordeal of the likes I could never have imagined.”
“I wasn’t drinking and didn’t sway her out of a window, and I just wanted to bang on the glass as we did together so many times before,” wrote Anello. “I was just so wrong about our surroundings. I was placed in charge of care for my beautiful granddaughter’s safe, and I failed. It will always be a continual nightmare every day and every night for the idle of my life.