Woman, 49, dies after racing into sea to try and rescue dog in Sussex

Woman, 49, dies after racing into sea to try and rescue her dog Myrtle when it got into difficulty in the water

  • Suzannah Conway, 49, was walking dog Myrtle on coast of Peacehaven, Sussex
  • The pooch fell in to the water with Suzi jumping in to try and rescue her
  • But the pair both got into difficulty and were unable to be rescued by passersby
  • Animal rescue charities have paid tribute to the ‘brave, beautiful’ volunteer

Heartfelt tributes have been paid to a dog owner who died after trying to rescue her pet from the sea.

Suzannah Conway, 49, died when she got into difficulty off the coast of Peacehaven, near Brighton on July 30.

Passersby failed to save her after she had leapt in to the sea after her dog Myrtle fell in and struggled to get back on to dry land. 

She had often supported animal rescue charities, with Somerset group Their Paws In Our Hands tribute paying tribute this week. 

Suzannah Conway, 49, died when she got into difficulty off the coast of Peacehaven, near Brighton on July 30

‘It is with a heavy heart that I share with you the death of a good friend, Suzi Conway, and her beloved dog Myrtle,’ the group said in a statement.

‘Suzi did our calendar and has helped out in so many other ways. Suzi died after going into the sea after Myrtle had fallen in and got into difficulty.

‘Unfortunately neither survived.

‘Suzi died as she lived, rescuing dogs in need. She will be very much missed.’

Her funeral was held last week, and an inquest was opened in Brighton earlier this month by the coroner Veronica Hamilton-Deeley.

Passersby failed to save her after she had leapt in to the sea after her dog Myrtle fell in and struggled to get back on to dry land 

News of Suzi’s death has caused shock in the area.

One woman said: ‘Heart shattering. What a brave, beautiful, instinctual human being, faithful to her beloved fur child, as they are to us.

‘I pray they’re thriving together and free, in true love, in a dimension where nothing can ever hurt them.’

Others said Suzi ‘adored’ her dog Myrtle.

One person said: ‘Heartbreaking news, she was a wonderful woman who loved animals so much. A loss to the rescue world.’

Sussex Police said: ‘A woman who had been pulled from the sea off South Coast Road, Peacehaven, at about 6pm on Tuesday (July 28) has sadly died.

‘The woman was initially treated by paramedics at the scene and was then taken by ambulance to the Royal Sussex County Hospital, Brighton.’

A full inquest into Suzi’s death is set to take place at Brighton Coroner’s Court on November 24.

Holidaymakers have been urged not to jump into storm-lashed seas to rescue rescue animals if they get swept away.

The warning came after a man’s life was saved when he leapt into the harbour at Southwold, Suffolk, after his dog called Ruby fell in. 

Alan Scoggins, coxswain of the Southwold lifeboat who saved the man, said today that pet owners should not jump in to help dogs, which can swim well and will usually make it back to the shore.

‘The best thing to do is call the emergency services as dogs will nearly always self-recover.

‘It may be a hard thing to looking at your pet in distress but this is the best advice we give.’

He said the man in the harbour drama was struggling and a family member hurled a lifebelt to him as he was being swept out to sea with the tide.

He and his dog were rescued and although shaken and cold, they had suffered no other injuries.

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