The outback town of Coober Pedy is grappling with a triple tragedy after a mother died just three days after her son died before the death of a local firefighter was also reported.
Goran Ilich, 34, died on November 12 and his body was tragically found by his mother Elizabeth.
Mr Ilich was a beloved member of the remote South Australian town, 850km north of Adelaide, where most of the 2,000 people who lived in the tight-knit community bonded over being the ‘opal capital of the world’ .
The local newspaper, the Coober Pedy regional timesquickly paid tribute to Mr. Ilich, saying he was a popular man among the locals.
Goran Ilich was popular among all age groups.
“He had a natural charm and was well-mannered and polite.”
Goran Ilich (pictured), 34, was found dead on the morning of Nov. 12 by his mother Elizabeth Ilich, according to Coober Pedy Regional Times.
His cause of death has yet to be released.
Three days after his death, Goran’s mother died in what locals called a “double tragedy.”
“In the early hours of Monday morning, a grief-stricken Elizabeth Ilich awoke with chest pains and called friends for help,” the paper reported.
An ambulance was called, but Mrs. Ilich died in hospital a few hours later.
“Friends have told Ms. Ilich had a heart condition and believe the grief of her son’s death triggered a heart attack.”
Three days after his death, Goran’s mother Elizabeth Ilich (pictured) died in what locals call a “double tragedy”
A GoFundMe was founded after the loss of Goran, who referred to him as ‘a beautiful soul taken too soon’.
“Everyone who interacted with Goran knew he was different, he could talk to anyone and charm them with his charisma and personality,” the fundraiser said.
“Goran has impressed us in so many different ways and in so many other cities.”
Local residents and friends of Goran posted tributes online and on the fundraiser.
‘Our sincere condolences. May God give you all strength,” one wrote.
Condolences to the family. Goran will be forever missed and the world will always be less bright without him,’ said another.
His friend Luka Belosevic took to Facebook to pay his respects to his mate, writing, “RIP my brother Goran Ilich. I miss you very much.’
But the Coober Pedy community was “shattered” again when a local firefighter was killed Friday.
Jayden Watts was described by the newspaper as a beloved part of the opal town.
“We pay our respects as we mourn the loss of Jayden, a much loved and respected member of the community, family man, partner, father, son, brother, friend, businessman, volunteer and many more,” the paper wrote.
The Coober Pedy community was “further shattered” by the death of local firefighter Jayden Watts. Jayden’s death was the third in the city in the space of a week
A resident paid his respects online to the three residents of Coober Pedy, with all three dying within a week.
“What a terrible week for the community. We have lost three beautiful members of our city,” they wrote.
“First Goren Ilich, then a few days later his mother, my girlfriend, Elizabeth, and then Jayden Watts just a few more days.
“This year we said that last goodbye to far too many of our friends and neighbors and I look forward to the end of the year.
“I extend my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Elizabeth and Goren Ilich and to the family and friends of Jayden Watts. My thoughts and prayers are for all of you.”