3 ‘Left Behind Children’ Drown, Devastates Migrant Worker Family

The grandmother is crying by her grandchildren's coffins.

From iFeng:

Three “Left Behind” Brothers & Sister Drown

On June 26, at about 1pm, a tragedy happened in Nanchang City Honggutan New District Shengmi Town Wenqing Village. Left Behind Children [children of migrant workers who remains in their parents’ hometowns often with grandparents or relatives while their parents find work in other parts of the country to support the family]—2 brothers and a sister—drowned while playing by the pool of water/pond/reservoir of water at the entrance of the village. Because no one had passed by at the time, it wasn’t until the body of the 5-year-old boy surfaced that people found out. This picture [above] is of the grandmother of the 3 brothers and sister crying her heart out in front of 3 refrigerated coffins.

The grandmother is crying her heart out.

As it is understood, the oldest of them was 10-year-old boy Luo Zhikun, along with the 9-year-old sister Luo Danni, and the 5-year-old little brother Luo Zhimo. Both Luo Zhikun and Luo Danni were in their 3rd grade at elementary school, while the 5-year-old little brother Luo Zhimo was still in kindergarten. The area of the pond in which the tragedy took place is about 20-30 mu [unit of area, 1 mu=0.0667 hectare], and is located at the entrance of the village. The grandmother’s house is was located in the first row [of buildings] by the entrance of the village, and is the closest house to the pond. On the early morning of the 26th, after the grandmother made breakfast for the whole family, she even reminded her granddaughter Luo Danni that she and her big brother should return home with their little brother as soon as they finish their tests. She never thought that these would be the last words she would say to her grandchildren.

The grandmother is crying her heart out.

According to the family members of the deceased children, the parents of the three brothers and sister used to work around the neighborhood, and were able to look after the children. But ever since last year, they have been working in a hotel in Zhuhai of Guangdong province, and the grandparents have become the ones who take care of the children. “Their grandfather is bedridden, although the grandmother is in good health, but she’s getting old.” According to the uncles of the deceased children, they heard that their older nephew and niece returned home after they finished the final tests, had called out for their grandmother, but found that she wasn’t home, so they along with their little brother went to play with water by the pond.

The front yard of this family.

“The 3 kids are all gone, we don’t even dare to tell their parents, we told them that only one of their kids drowned,” said the children’s relatives. The parents of the deceased children are currently rushing back.

The reservoir where the tragedy took place.

At the reservoir where the tragedy took place, there are no fences or any other protective measures at all.

Comments from iFeng:

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凤凰网山东省菏泽市网友 不行就不行吧:

I feel like I’m going to go crazy… Little children are so heart-breaking. Those who are mothers can’t handle this.

凤凰网北京市网友 手机用户:

Left Behind Children need our attention! Stop talking about spaceships, aircraft carriers and garbage football/soccer all the time.

凤凰网河北省网友 xingyhu:

China’s policies should be changed. Reduce the restrictions on hukou, reduce the numbers of left-behind children, and only then can tragedies like this be reduced.

凤凰网内蒙古网友 baoht:

This old woman isn’t pitiful—she’s hateful [to be blamed]!

凤凰网湖北省武汉市网友 凤凰网友: (responding to above)

Is your heart twisted? Why is this old grandma hateful? She’s so old that she should be enjoying life, yet she must help to take care of three children. Now the children are dead, she has exhausted herself for nothing and still she has to bear a the-old-burying-the-young kind of result.

凤凰网湖南省益阳市网友 wosty0716: (responding to baoht)

It is easy for you to say so. Forget about three children, dare you try to raise just one?

凤凰网湖南省长沙市网友 铁子d:

I’ve said countless times, swimming must be set as a required course starting from elementary school!! Children who can’t swim should not be allowed to graduate!! Only this way can we limit drowning tragedies to its minimum!! iFeng just don’t want me to post it!!

凤凰网河南省郑州市网友 凤凰网友:

Seeing this piece of news early in the morning makes my heart ache terribly. What is going on? What is going wrong?!

凤凰网广东省佛山市网友 yongming2005:

Such a tragedyl! Who can bear a blow like this?!

Safety education for children really can’t be neglected.

凤凰网广东省东莞市网友 dahewj:

So cruel, I can’t bear to read this.

Comments from QQ:

腾讯网友 文文静静:

Heartbreaking. Really, seeing a report like this in the morning. Children, rest in peace. The wage-earning class is just like this, make a living by getting separated from their children.

腾讯网友 骷髅恋:

After reading this, I’m very sad. What poor children! What a poor grandmother!

腾讯网友 爱的天使:

I feel a little bit like crying. I don’t know what I feel about this, my heart hurts so much.

腾讯网友   :

Why do disasters always befall a fragile old woman? God is so unfair.

腾讯网友 8415583:

This is so cruel, nothing hurts more than losing a family member, not to mention to lose three at the same time… heartbreaking.

腾讯网友 *^_^*:

How are their parents going to face this?

腾讯网友 844927214:

Poor old lady, poor parents, poor children!

腾讯网友 狼外婆:

When will the tragedies stop? Why does it always happen to kids from poor families?

腾讯网友 生命可以燃烧几何:

Water is ruthless! The weather is hot, be careful!!

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  • Jobjed

    “We told them that only one of their kids drowned,” said the children’s relatives. The parents of the deceased children are currently rushing back.

    Now that’s just devastating. The parents will be rushing back with the impression that not all is lost, only to be confronted with the news that all of their children are gone. I would prefer it if they told the parents at the beginning the complete truth in order to spare them having to hear bad news twice.

    • anon101

      yeah, poor parents, coming home to hug their two remaining children only to find out they are dead as well.

    • markus peg

      I don’t understand the train of thought behind what they have said, they surely know why the parents are rushing hope to hug their living children with regret for leaving them…

      tragic story..

      • Nefarious Laowei

        Clearly it is the children’s relatives (momentarily) selfishly saving face.

        • Jobjed

          . . . . . . what? How is that even a valid hypothesis?

          • Nefarious Laowei

            Simple, Sherlock. They fudged telling the whole truth to the parents as not to cause extreme personal embarassment. Leaving the parents with hope was a selfish act on thier part.

          • I think it is more of their way of avoiding uncomfortable confrontation rather than saving face.

          • asdf

            Its so that the parents would come home instead of jumping off the hotel they work at.

          • With China’s theory of how to “raise” their kids, these people probably would be better for the world to not have any more of their dumb asses.

          • Nefarious Laowei

            When does the rationalization for withholding the truth stop?

          • MrT

            never stops, one lie on top of another lie about why that lie was told.
            Grandma was off playing cards somewhere as well, not giving a fuck about the kids.
            No culture in China really.

          • booo

            wtf are you talking about? the children went to school for some test. when you say giving a fuck about the kids does it mean she needs to follow them wherever they go 24/7? and the oldest one is 10 year old already. ok let’s suppose she went to play majong for a while when the kids were away. so what?! old lady can’t have her own life that is what you call culture? she also has a bedridden husband to take care of for god’s sake!!! it is not the old lady to blame. you point your finger to the wrong person.

          • MrT

            yea you right not her as individual but the whole culture.(laugh)

            listen every day i see these grandparents on scooters taking the kids to school, 3 up 4 up some chickens what ever.

            No helmets, running over red lights in any direction because they know fuck all about responsibility.
            that generation is fucked, sooner they die off the better but the problem is they teaching the kids the same way to behave, so it wont get any better.

            No one really gives a fuck either.

          • Mighty曹

            hahaha… fixed the HTML.

          • The Enlightened One

            You have a point, I ride my bike (Honda) around town and I see many of these people driving like they couldn’t care less what happened. People on scooters driving full speed out from behind bushes onto an expressway going the wrong way.

            You REALLY have to drive in China to see what it is like. It’s like these people want to get hit so they can claim compensation when a car hits them. Car hits scooter, then it it the car driver’s fault. That’s why they drive like that… among other reasons. So they think everyone will do their best to avoid hitting them.

            But there are good drivers as well, so we don’t know if this old woman fits that bill. But it is certainly a problem that needs to be addressed.

          • maja

            some mandatory driving lessons would be so nice… but I guess a few impactful ads would be good too, they work in the west even if some of them are a bit obscene.
            speaking of which I feel this article is something like a big ad for children supervision… but that’s ridiculous, I mean how many drown children vs. reckless traffic behaviour can you see here?
            and even then the drowning was basically accidental… maybe the ad is for swimming lessons. unless someone really wants to go full dystopian and install fences around every pond in the country, and then a guard to watch the fence, then a supervisor, etc.

          • mr.wiener

            How can you know this for certain?

          • MrT

            exactly, impossible to know the truth here.

          • SimpsonsGoldenAge

            Why should the Grandma be accompanying the child 24/7!? What kind of life did you have when you were a child, your parents didn’t let you go out and play with friends? 你才可怜啊

          • MrT

            where did i say that u fking Muppet?
            And dont project, you dont know me so go f u c k your self

          • SimpsonsGoldenAge

            You implied the grandmother should have been with the children…directly implying that kids should be accompanied 100% of the time, I’m not projecting, instead making an assumption on your childhood based on your opinions.


          • If they jump of the hotel because one dies, they sure are idiots(never mind they are). Theses relatives thinks very little of the parents and are probably right.

          • MrT

            more like they wouldn’t bother come if they knew all 3 kids were dead and then cut of the money supply to grandma.for baby sitting fees.

          • Nefarious Laowei

            I say “ta-mah-to”. You say “ta-may-to”.
            Its all the same to me.

          • MrT

            correct, that hows it works here.

    • The Enlightened One

      Yeah, when I read that… I was like… oh man that is is just horribly brutal.

      • mr.wiener

        When my grandmother died my parents were on holidays, the first one they’d been on in decades. My brothers and I were all in our late teens and elected not to tell them and let them enjoy themselves. then we drove 5 hours across state to get there and be the pallbearers.
        At first glance them telling them one child has died seems like a horrible decision, but what a thing to have to tell someone, tragic.

        • DavidisDawei

          Wow Wiener –
          You didn’t tell your Mother or Father their Mother died and they missed the funeral?

          • mr.wiener

            This was the consensus from every one in the family. It was a boat cruise and would have taken them a while and a lot of complicated travel to get back in time. They acknowledged we made the right decision afterwards.

    • bprichard

      That was amazingly cruel. What a dickish thing to do.

    • Think of the common good. Family deaths are often withheld information. This was the case for diver Wu Minxia at the Olympics, as it was for students taking the gaokao exam. Three reported examples this year alone.


      The parents knowing the “full truth” way out at their migrant job would do no one no good. It’s lying with the “good intention” of thinking about the parents’ sake.

  • Garry

    So sad. In my country (Austrliia) swimming classes are part of normal schooling. All children learn to swim.

    • markus peg

      I agree, i had swimming lessons in school as well, even if the school doesn’t have a swimming pool students would take a trip to the nearest public pool to learn.

    • b00oyourdaddyb000

      it will be impossible. there are not enough facilities. in fact, many schools don’t even have a descent playground. also not enough qualified teachers, most grownup chinese can’t swimming. i learned swimming by myself since once i was almost drowned in the sea. never got formal swimming training but i am faster than most men in a public swimming pool here i’m a girl and the city i live in has larger swimming population than most inland chinese cities. but most importantly, schools just don’t care. they seem to be more concern about their political classses

      • booo

        ohh i actually meant ‘politics class’ but somehow ‘political classes’ kinda make sense too

      • booo

        why? you down voter think most chinese can swim? this year in 2 different occasions 2 military guys tried to save people from the same river and both of these 2 good guys got drowned.

        • Some rivers are dangerous even for the best of swimmers. Even if a current on the surface seems relatively tame, the undercurrent, and the fatigue from fighting it, is what gets people. That, and panicked drowning people dragging them down with them. You don’t just have to swim to save someone, you have to be a strong swimmer who knows what they’re doing.

          • mr.wiener

            I’m a good swimmer, but when I tried to help a guy out in difficulties in a river once I made a couple of big mistakes that damn near did for me
            .#1 I could barely use my left arm as I’d broken the collar bone 4 months before.
            #2 I didn’t kick my shoes off [real dum]
            Thank Christ I didn’t make the 3rd and fatal error of letting him get his drowning mitts on me. I made him float on his back and got him by the back of his collar to keep his head out of the water. Then I flagged down a paddle boat to get him back to the shore.

          • Nice, good thinking. I’ve never had to try and save any drowning people, thankfully. I’m a decent swimmer as in keeping myself afloat for a long period of time, but I’m not the fastest or strongest swimmer. As tall and thin as I am, you would think I would just torpedo through the water. But, that’s the same with my land travel skills. I can run for a long time, just not very fast.

          • DavidisDawei

            The mistake most people make is thinking they have to swim and they panic.

            Many times, the best thing to do is to simply keep your lungs inflated and stay afloat, conserve your energy and analyze your situation. Force yourself to take deep breaths and stay calm.
            Most of the time, it is not that bad…
            (unless you’re going over Niagara Falls)

            We were thrown into the ocean several miles off shore and it is a normal reaction to panic (especially when you don’t see land), but focus on staying calm…I often float in place in the course of a long swim.

            It is also an ominous feeling when the rip-tide grabs you and pulls you out to sea; it is difficult to stay calm and have faith it will let you go after a few hundred meters.

          • I don’t really have any formal training other than spending a lot of time in the water (not much around the ocean, though) and getting the Mile Swim badge in Boy Scouts haha

          • The Enlightened One

            You are lucky you didn’t make that 3rd mistake. That one is the worst… that’s the big one.

          • mr.wiener

            I’m stupid, but I’m not f*cking stupid :)

          • booo

            where you save this fellow? i thought americans all swims. don’t think every drowning person will only grab you tight to pull you down together. when i was drowning, this good guy who saved my life trying to approach from behind me. i noticed that obviously but i was very careful to climb up his back and hold his shoulder quite gently so that’s how he brought me back to the beach. well i was not exactly drowning just the weave was too crazy that day and kept pullling me further into the ocean. it’s like they raised some red flag for a warning but it’s just too much fun to stay in water up down with the tide..

          • mr.wiener

            I saved this guy in Taiwan. He was Taiwanese. I’m Australian. the teach us swimming in school.
            The only problem is if you learn to swim in a pool that is very different to a river or an ocean beach. The life savers in Australia in particular watch out for asian tourist now as too many of them get drowned.

          • b00oyourdaddyb000

            right kitty luckily my cat swims

          • Yes, a large majority of mammals know how to swim.

    • Irvin

      China: teaching you all the things that would make you a better slave and nothing that will save your life.

  • vincent

    The article is heartbreaking but why are the kids splayed across a table like that?

    • markus peg

      I thought the same thing and who is taking photos…

    • Mony Xie

      I guess they don’t have a better choice? The coffins aren’t ready and they got no body bags.

      • maja

        the question is rather who took that picture..

    • Californiaz

      like peices of meat

      Communists wiped out all respect in their “Progressive Movement” and all spittoons too.

    • The Enlightened One

      Yeah that was pretty creeping right?

      Can you imagine sleeping in a house with the dead bodies of three children on your living room table… just seems very warped.

    • Because readers need to see why the old woman is crying like that.

      Conversely, the old woman is expressly crying like that at the time of the photo being taken because they are framed in the background.

      Because: tragedy is in the details.

      • Mighty曹

        Or maybe she really was expressively crying.

  • slob

    Is it just me or does the first picture with the guy looking over the coffine look…photoshopped? Am I seeing things?

    • markus peg

      what looks Photoshopped and why would anyone do that?

      its been edited to add on a watermark and when saved down for web may have saved as a lossy pixelated image

      • slob

        I dunno the people look…blurry? thought it was just another ‘floating politician’ adding himself into the pic.

        • It’s just bad quality compression of the photo, mixed with what appears to be an indoor shot without the use of a flash, where inanimate objects would be a bit more crisp than a moving object, such as people, due to a slower shutter speed.

          • Mighty曹

            Whisker, speaking of photos, I didn’t make it to Yosemite as I had planned. My friend who was working and living there moved to Reno. Bummer.

          • That sucks. You should have gone out to Reno, though…Lake Tahoe and all the nice landscape around it isn’t too far away

          • Mighty曹

            Well, I’m heading up there for the 4th of July weekend. Yeah not much to do with a camera there. I love Lake Tahoe and I usually go to there once in the summer and once in the winter for some snow. It’s a 3 hour drive. But when it’s snowing it sometimes take 5-6 hours with snow chains. Still, it’s worth the drive.

          • Man, I’m jealous. It will be a while before I have a chance to drive out that far again.

          • Mighty曹

            Well, I’m more jealous of the Shinto Shrine and the Alishan Forest because I’m not sure if those locations will ever be on my ‘to visit’ list that’s already filled for the next 20 years.

          • Haha just next time you fly across the Pacific, make sure you stop by Taiwan. It’s not too terribly big, you could find it

          • Mighty曹

            Trukey is next on the list. (Attending a friend’s wedding) So I’m also going to do Greece and the surrounding Med area. If I visit my uncle in Taiwan I’ll have the perfect excuse for Alishan.

          • Bring me back to Taiwan with you.
            I need to return to Lanyu Island, sans severe intestinal infection this time.

          • Mighty曹

            You’ve been to Lanyu Island already??? Damn you.

          • Yep, exactly one year and a week from this date. It’s incredible. Spent about three days there but I was so sick, I ended up in the hospital for almost 24 hours when I got back to Taipei haha

          • Mighty曹

            That’s one island I really want to go.
            What happened? The local cuisine?

          • Nah, I was feeling a bit crummy the night before we went. By the time I got to Lanyu, it was clear I had some kind of food poisoning. The morning after we got back to Taipei, I could barely even walk. The doctor said on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most severe, I had an 11 haha. It was absolute misery.

          • Mighty曹

            Damn, sounds like you narrowly escaped death. Good to have still alive and kicking. I’m always cautious with what I eat because my biggest fear is having diarrhea while on a trip.

          • Well, maybe if I were out in the middle of nowhere with no access to medical care…but it wasn’t too serious for your average doctor haha. It’s not like it turned into a blood infection or anything. Just miserable. Lanyu was a pretty bad one to have diarrhea on, but unfortunately/fortunately the inflammation was so bad, I could barely go anyway!

    • Mighty曹

      Actually grandma being consoled by the wall does have the PS look.
      Ok, give me a few minutes. I’ll give you the floating officials

      • Guest

        Floating Chinese Government Officials

        • BiggJ

          That’s actually a better PS then the one where they are on the road. lol It’s kind inappropriate but it’s funny.

          • Mighty曹

            I know it may be in bad taste but I figured it’s already happened so might as well deal with it with humor. ‘slob’ asked for it. Blame him.

        • slob

          I <3 you man

          • Mighty曹

            No prob. But you take the flak for if anyone complains about it being in bad taste.

        • The Enlightened One

          Hmm… three ready coffins… three government officials… are you thinking what I am thinking?

          • Missing sign:
            “Buy two, get one free”

    • maja

      it’s the lighting, quite professional quality

  • b00oyourdaddyb000


    • Irvin

      Make sure you got protection, it’s a dangerous world

      • b00oyourdaddyb000

        oh i don’t know it’s that dangerous but my current concern is i got like 5 pimples inside my ear and hurt like hell.. do you know a safe way to remove them? i guess they were too busy making me a slave to teach me how to get rid of my pimples it’s like usually you will clean your ears with cotton buds but now i can’t even do that and i got oily ears

        • wat

        • BiggJ

          You should have kept your ears clean and stop sticking your dirty, greasy fingers in there. hahah You too busy being taught how to work on production line but snapping iphones together. They don’t teach ear cleaning 101….apparently teeth brushing 101 too. haha I’m just joking with ya.

          • b00oyourdaddyb000

            i wonder how i’m supposed to snapping iphones together if i got greasy fingers..

        • mr.wiener

          Clean your ears more often and use alcohol to disinfect and clean the areas you get the pimples in.

          • b00oyourdaddyb000

            i wash them every day with lemon juice

          • BiggJ

            Rub some gutter oil in there. That will clear that right up.

          • b00oyourdaddyb000

            no way we save that for cook…

        • Mighty曹

          Just enjoy your teenage years.

    • Mighty曹


      • booo

        god i don’t know if there is even any difference. when you fuck a girl, she fucks you at the same time. yes the world fucks us, so FUCK THE WORLD!!!

        • Mighty曹

          If someone says, “Fuck this world” I can’t imagine him digging a hole in the ground on which he stands and begin performing coitus. But if that’s what you do, then, yes I agree with you completely.

  • Nefarious Laowei

    A small event in this world, but staggering in human tragedy. My heart goes out to the family and children.

  • Dr Sun

    There’s nothing good about the Hukou system, never has been, it rips families apart.

    • Nah. with the Hukou we get:

      * cheap migrant labor without families to distract them
      * no support system required for this invisible demographic
      * a class system where there are no classes; rampant regionalism
      * “outsider mentality” that dovetails with Chinese xenophobia

      You see families being ripped apart, other sees a huge GDP and infrastructure development.

      Also: the megacity nearing completion, we will have Judge Dredd around to police the 1984. Finally: bullet-time.

  • Joe

    Those coffins are mad ugly.

    • Atlas

      The correct word is “steampunk”.

    • mr.wiener


      • Mighty曹

        The same one farmer Li used for that alien.

  • Heartbreaking

    I can’t imagine how awful of a “surprise” its going to be to the parents when they arrive to find they’ve lost all three.

  • Irvin

    water reservoir, does that mean people will be drinking dead juice then?

  • 腾讯网友   :

    Why do disasters always befall a fragile old woman? God is so unfair.”

    Again, another story of parents that are unfit to be parents. For many Chinese, they all follow the tradition of having children but most of them have not even given any thoughts about how they should raise their spawns properly. They seem to selfishly think that “all” they need to do is provide shelter (at the grandparent/s), supervision (grandparents/s), and money for all other needs. This is why this tradition is so fucked up. It is the blind leading the blind. If they can’t take care of their own spawns and live under their own means and careless let let “others/gov. education system” raise their kids without a lot of morals or any other responsibility; well there you have it. Is leaving a legacy and blood line that egocentrically that important while China has billions of people already?

    It is a tragedy nonetheless, but I couldn’t feel the sympathies of people who leave their kids as others’ responsibility. If survival means more than having kids, then they never put any thoughts in how they really want to develop a human being and what they really need to put in for it. But noooooooooo, have more kids because kids cost less than a fucking condom.

    Pop babies pop, but none the wiser. Buy that cute puppy you always wanted people, and when you can’t handle the poop, food, and the diligent training, throw it to your poor parents. The grandparents are also to blame for accepting to take care of responsibilities that of their children. Shouldn’t old people be a bit wiser in knowing that kids aren’t always listening to anything!? Because they are fucking kids, and this wide acceptance of ohhh every kid can walk home everyday without doing something stupid. The idea that “my kids are good kids, they’d never do this or that” is amongst the very essence of stupidity and assumptions in most parents/caretakers. Ignorance begets ignorance, it’s all an expected tale. Those other lucky kids get to survive but still end up thinking traditionally and follow that children spawning, world depleting path, making money to survive and doing whatever they need to… and just let that cycle continue…let’s see how many well adjusted people there will be.

    So to the commentator above, s/he must be a leeching sack of shit that expects everything to be given and everything to be “fair” or else just cry about it.

    • Ryo Saeba

      The problem is that the grandparents are usually the ones pushing (brainwashing) their kids to have children. Always saying shit like “this is the way it’s suppose to be.” The old generation has the same IQ as a rock at best. They don’t care about providing for them and giving them the best education or living standards. All they care about is telling other villagers “I have a grandchild!”

      Try saying you don’t want kids in China. The only thing that pops up in their heads is “s/he must not be able to have one,” or “s/he already has one somewhere else.”

      I’m glad though because without all these poor (and I mean lack of money) kids, things would be more expensive here!

  • wafflestomp

    So the one granny who isn’t overprotective and holding the kids dick to pee well into his teens loses her only reason for living? Weak.

  • Sabrina

    This is one of the saddest stories I’ve ever read. Just looking at the grandmother is heartbreaking.. I cannot even begin to imagine what she must be going through. It’s bad enough losing one child, but losing all three at once is unimaginable. I do think the relatives shouldn’t have lied to the parents though… they should have told them to return immediately and then broke the news instead of telling them just one has passed away.

  • BiggJ

    This has nothing to do with” left behind children” or bad parenting…..it’s just shitty luck. What do you expect the grandmother to do? Tie the kids to a leash in the house? Kid do this kind of shit especially in the summer. When I was even younger then these kids me and a couple neighborhood kids would take off camping for 2-3 day at a time. We would camp next to lake swim all day, do fucked up things, make camp fires. We would just bring a little tent and a few loafs of bread and a pack of cheese slices and an old pan to cook them in. Oh an a few lighters…and that’s it. We would just swim all day and play with fire at night. No adults around for miles. Just three 7 year old kids being kids. We were all good swimmers though. We were just lucky none of us died.

    These kids just had bad luck. It sucks but shit does happen. But it’s not the parents fault or the grandmother. You can’t watch your kids 24 hours a day. And it;s not the chinese governments fault or some bullshit. Things just went sour that day…just bad luck…it;s a shame.

    • death_by_ivory

      I agree with you but nowadays nobody lets young kids alone to play.Let alone camping for days.Safety needs to be taught to parents,grandparents.I live in a big city,no way I would let my 9 year old hang out on the streets with her friends.If I would live next to a pond,for sure not even though she can swim.

      • BiggJ

        I guess depends where you live. I would not let my kids roam around a city either. It not nature it’s other people i’m worried about. Maybe I would if they were with a group of friends but not that young, maybe 12 or 13 I would let them go out in city, but it would to a designated area. It also depends on how smart my was. If I knew they were a retard I would would think twice about them go over night or swimming by themselves…..you would know if your kid has the common sense to do things like that though. But shit still can happen.

        • DavidisDawei

          It is a different world now I think…Maybe my parents would be considered delinquent by today’s standards.

          I can think of many times I could have made the headlines if I had taken a wrong step at the wrong time as a child. Thankfully, none of my mistakes were fatal.

          I can recall exploring since I was 5-6 years old with my older brother. We would play in trees, pig pens, rivers, train tracks, sand pits, quarries, etc…

          We learned basic survival skills (like swimming, etc) very early…I don’t recall ever struggling to learn to swim (I think I was thrown in and told to sink or swim) but have always had a healthy fear/respect of water and many other things…
          I recall my Father telling me, “You can walk 100 miles, but you can’t swim it”

    • The Enlightened One

      I agree with you. There is really nobody to blame. It doesn’t say the children couldn’t swim but one has to assume that if all three drowned then all of them probably had no clue how to swim properly.

      I hope China starts putting swim classes into their education program. Would learning a skill that could save the lives of children be a bad thing? Some schools have pools but only the top tier and even then most of the time they don’t actually use the pools too often because they are a pain to maintain.

      Beats the hell out of learning all those shitty grammar rules from those horribly written text books… even the writers of those grammar books took the tests and failed. Toss those books out and teach the kids how to swim!

      • BiggJ

        Yeah man swimming is pretty key. My school had a program like that but I can’t remember if it was mandatory. but twice a month we would take a bus to the university and take swimming lesson. Fucking great time. I think it cost a bit of money but nothing serious. even really poor people could afford it, It was 10 or 20 dollars a school year. Yeah talking to chinese people in china a lot can’t swim. I would say less then half the chinese I know can’t swim, Where in canada almost everyone I know can swim. Some people don’t like it, but they know how to swim.

        There a guy from England I know and he says it mandatory to learn how to swim there. I don’t know how true it is. But it’s a good idea if it is.

      • x1sfg

        It shouldn’t be the government or a public school’s sole responsibility to teach basic water safety, especially a country with a corrupt government like the PRC. It’s the parents responsibility to teach their kids basic public safety, not the public sector. It’s going to be a waste of funds, especially in a country with rampant fiscal corruption like the PRC.

        • The Enlightened One

          You are right but what is the point of teaching them tons of useless academics if there are no courses offered in aid for the children to preserve their own lives (safety first). There should be more courses offered to children to help prevent dangers and how to overcome them.

          Drowning seems to occur very frequently in China as least by media coverage.

    • Ryo Saeba

      So you think nothing is wrong with having kids you can’t afford? Then you don’t do it once, you do it 3 times! Then you stick them with your grandparents who look like she is 80+, who should be enjoying their little time left on earth traveling or just relaxing. Even with all that, if you still don’t realize that kids need to be taught and learn that playing around a lake is DANGEROUS. You can’t watch a kid 24/7 but you can at lease confine them to an area where you know it’s relatively safe. You wouldn’t allow your kids to play near an area where there’s a 100 foot cliff now would you?

      It is always the parent’s fault because it was their kids and it was their responsibility, not some 80yo grandmother.

      • BiggJ

        Who says they can’t afford them? Not a lot of family anywhere in the world have the luxury of 1 parent around all the time to watch their kids. Most have to have a babysitter or a grandparent watch the kids when they work…Especially during the summer when the kids have no school. I had the same deal as these kids sort of. Before I could stay home by myself I would get off the bus at the grandmothers house and stay there until 6pm when my mom got home. And during the summer I would go to the grandparents for meals and the rest of the time was free game for me. We would ride bikes, go play in the woods, go swimming…whatever we wanted to do. All I had to do was tell my gram where I was going and thats it. We got hurt sometimes but none of us lost a limb or died. This situation just bad luck. Life is not a certain thing. Sometimes bad things happen. All you can do hope it don’t happen to you. You can’t always shelter your kids from everything. Living in a city would be a different, but country life should not be a 100% sheltered life. You have to go do things on your own to learn about the world.

        Sheltering and babying kids too much turns them into idiots. My wife’s brother for instance. My wife is the oldest but was able to do what she wanted because they wanted a boy. So as soon a they had a son it was jsut baby the shit of him while my wife had to go learn things from doing real life things on her own, made her a smart girl who can take herself. Now my brother in law is 27 or 28 and still lives home and has his parents they cook all of his meals and he don’t know how to function in the real world, pretty much scared of his own shadow. He can’t swim, he can’t ride a bike, don’t know how to cook anything but instant noodles. The guy is book smart, but life smart he’s not. The reason because he was not allowed to go and socialize and so do things on his own when he was kid. All he was allowed to do was study study study. He a good guy but just not prepared for the world.

        And I would not want my kids playing around 100 foot cliff but how am I going to stop them? If they want to do they will find a way. Unless I put them on a leash in my house 24 hours a day. All I can do is teach them whats safe and dangerous and let them make their own choices. The world is not child proof.

        You can’t really blame the parents, They were working to support their kids like 99% of the parents out there. Everyone situation is different but they where working to support their kids. It would be like if I left my kid with my grandmother for the day while me and wife went for a day out and my kid accidently falls down and breaks his neck and dies. That not my fault or the grandparents….it was just shitty luck.

      • Dave

        “Poor people should not have kids because they’re poor” is never a solution.

      • Baphomet

        Thing is where are the warning signs? Although there will be idiots who always ignore them, at least some fencing could have kept them out.

    • “bureaucractic evil”

      I think you’re missing the point at why this is a sensational story for Zhinese. Because “left behind” is a basically everyone’s story in Zhina: you need to go work to provide for your children; it’s the same phenomenon of women who have had their babies that elect to go back to work weeks afterwards the labor, even days.

      These parents are working so hard and have sacrificed so much to provide for their children, and for what? Not being able to raise them themselves, they handed over the responsibility…

      Zhina’s Brave New World: is it all worth it? Why are you working yourself to death? Why are your children made into “strangers that you love”?

      It’s not about blaming this accident, but instead examining the circumstances that led to this.

      • BiggJ

        But this is not just a chinese problem. This kind of things happens everywhere. The world makes people do these things. You have to work to live. That’s just how it is. Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth then work or crime is your only options. I’d rather leave my kid with a family member then a stranger in the city I live in while I work. I see this exact same thing happen in Canada. This happens a lot in the province I was born in. It’s one the poorest areas in canada and the jobs all suck and dont pay shit. So A mom and dad will move to say Alberta or British Columbia and work and bank lots of money. Most get seasonal jobs like oil drilling or forestry and then spend half the year there and half the year home. And if they have kids sometimes they leave them with the grandparents in Nova Scotia. I do the same thing except I don’t have kids. I work in Alberta in the winter and live in Nova Scotia in the summer. It’s a hard choice for a parent. Bring your kids with you and get a stanger to pretty much watch them the whole time while you work or leave them with the granparents while you work. Either way you don’t get to see your kids often. Or live in a cardboard box on the street and with you kids so you can be with them all the time and watch them starve to death.

        This whole situation can be avoided by not having kids. But it’s not that easy. We are programed to reproduce. People want kids no matter what the changed or problems it will cause them in life. This is just how the world operates now. Sure 100 or 200 years ago you could pop out 13 kids and live on farm and grow your own food and live live like that. You can’t do that now a days. Times have changed, The world has change. But this situation in the story is not just localized to china.

        • What is localized to China are “hukou” – the control of people in regards to where they live and work. Hey Canucklehead, you wanna go to Moosejaw? Head east to St John’s? Freedom. Wanna bring your kids, who will have access to the Canadian rights of education? Right up there with maple syrup. Not the same for Chinese migrant workers who are busily building China’s massive new infrastructure for cheap and yet boosting the GDP.

          You are describing a “hard fact of life”; I’m trying to describe how insanely punitive the phenomenon of “left behind” is.

          [no, not about the “Rapture”]

          • BiggJ

            Yeah I suppose. I actually just read about hukou because I never really knew much about it. Yeah I can see how this would make a lot of families like this family. I never realized they could not get their kids education when they moved to work in the city. You are right, the hukou changes everything. I just thought they could move wherever they wanted and bring thier kids.

            Then I got thinking what if there was not any hukou….and chinese would go wherever they wanted?There would be 100 million plus people in some cities.

            Well in the end I guess you have roll with the punches. In the end your still doing what you have to do. Fair or not. That’s china…if you don’t like it…..too fucking bad lol.

    • Take5

      BiggJ, For the most part i think your right. Shit happens. When i was 15 i saw an 7 year old boy go to the bottom of a pool and not come up. I jumped in and saved him. He was lucky that day. His 10 year old brother was there but he could not help him. Fortunately growing up i was a lousy swimmer, but not so lousy i could not help this kid. This is some very sad shit. I feel for the parents who are trying to make a better life and for the old grandmother. At that age just doing the best she can. no one is to blame. sometime in life shit happens.

  • death_by_ivory

    OMG that picture with the youngsters on the desk,really heartbreaking.And the parents,I cannot even imagine.

  • MrT

    The fact is there’s lots drowning here every day, more then car deaths I reckon.

    There is zero education for swimming, well zero education for any kind of safety. they teach them to turn lights off to save money, a tap of to save money but they dont teach them how to cross a road, they dont teach them how to swim, they dont teach them how to help others .

    They wont waist money and time teaching kids how to swim because it wont help them pass exams and then earn them money later.

    Leaving the kids with the biggest retard generation (mao) on the planet is truly holding China back.

    Its got fuck all to do with parents needing to work away.

    In the big city’s where the parents are born and bred they dump the kids soon as they are old enough at kindergartens (where retards look after them) so both parents can go out to work so they can afford to buy two cars two house, etc.

    Its full on money making here and zero responsibility.

    • Kids don’t need skills like they’re Napolean Dynamite (though that would be cool).

      They need parenting. By parents. To help make wise decisions they couldn’t do on their own.

  • lonetrey / Dan

    All their kids in one swift stroke…. This is just sad.

  • The Enlightened One

    “I’ve said countless times, swimming must be set as a required
    course starting from elementary school!! Children who can’t swim should
    not be allowed to graduate!! Only this way can we limit drowning
    tragedies to its minimum!! iFeng just don’t want me to post it!!”

    I agree with this guy, when I went to a few beaches in China, everyone had a life tube… when I went to a few beaches in the Philippines, all the Asian tourists couldn’t swim without a life jacket. Swimming needs to be taught to all children, we live in 2013 here.

  • The Enlightened One

    That picture is hard to look at… It is like seeing an old woman having the soul strangled out of her. We may all talk shit now and then but if you can look at her in that much pain and not feel anything then you are a monster.

    • Claude

      Ugh! I have to agree.That photo is heart wrenching.

  • Mighty曹

    Grandma’s pain is so unbearable. I wish the parents are told the truth. It’s better to be devastated ONCE instead of TWICE. It’ll be like being stabbed twice and I hope the mother doesn’t grab a knife and act on that anguish when she faces the truth. God bless them.

  • B*tches, Leave

    tragic, of course, but since there’s a lack of proper education, accidents like this will serve as “trial and error” for the rest of the uneducated people.

  • Claude

    I don’t think those are coffins but individual refrigeration units. If you look at the base you’ll see something that resembles a generator. Maybe the town can’t afford a walk in cooler. Don’t know, just speculating there.

    Anyway. This story is horrible. RIP.

  • maja

    what is that thing on the table in the second photo? is it even a real photo? it looks like photoshop, but it could be that the bodies were just blurred out of focus.. the idea that someone could stack the naked corpses in the sitting room and a picture be taken of the grand mother having a break-down in front of it, it’s so… I think it’s a fake done by the photoreporter to “express the feelings”, but… …. …. …..

  • BrandeX

    Content aside, my favorite part of this article is where they translate one unit of measurement no one knows with another that no one ever uses. (In daily life and wouldnt need to look up to convert to something you can visualize)

  • Karze

    Chinese model of making money while abandoning their children is not wholesome.

  • Repatriated

    In only skimming all of the posts, I do agree that the kids are “left behind”. Too often do parents (fault or not) leave young kids with parents in China. If you were 80, would you be able to chase around a grandchild that’s 5?

    My sister gave birth to twins…and 3 days afterwards, she was taking care of them by HERSELF. She wasn’t whining about needing months of bedrest.

    If a Chinese woman gives birth (especially to a son), she acts likes she just saved the world and everyone (her mother) needs to dote on her.

    • BiggJ

      haha Yeah they have some wierd traditions after giving birth there. Me and my wife where in china and her cousin had a baby. So about 3 weeks after she gave birth we went to her cousins to see the baby and whatnot. So we walked in the her cousins bedroom and just fucking stunk. I never said anything but man it was almost enough to make you gag. Yeah it was like a really bad body oder smell. She was laying in bed and I met her before and she kept pretty clean so I thought well it can’t be her. I thought maybe a rat or something died under the bed and no one knew about it. So after we left I asked my wife why the room stunk so bad. She said after you give birth you are not allowed to have a shower or wash your hair……I ask her why and she said she had no fucking clue hahaha. I’m just wondering why having a shower would effect you are the baby in anyway? Crazy shit.

      • Jobjed

        Didn’t happen to any of my relatives in China. Perhaps your wife’s cousin belongs to a small portion of the Chinese population that still clings onto superstitious bullshit.

        • BiggJ

          Yeah they are just country folk. The village to me looks like you you took a time machines 50 years in the past. You can even drive a car in the village, It’s all just talking paths enough to drive like a ebike on. ALso the mother and kid could not leave the house for that month either. I think it has to do with the baby getting sick or something. I really don’t know.

        • Spod

          I lived in a Major city in the North of China for nearly 10 years – I can tell you this was the norm with local staff – as well as not holding the baby after the birth.

      • garbo

        My husband’s sister was the same only they said they couldn’t give the baby a bath for a YEAR! The poor kid was having all kids of skin problems. I told them it was nonsense and to bathe her right away. Plus they wrapped her in six layers and it was 35C. So strange. Plus her husband had to stay home and take care of her for her whole pregnancy. He couldn’t work.

    • YourSupremeCommander

      I agree with you. But knowing the cultural differences and the different ways people live their lives I can give you a very good idea why.

      Women in the west tend to do a lot more exercises to keep up their health & shapes, whereas most Asian women try to avoid the sun at all cost, and they are very lazy in terms of working out, etc. Making their bodies more frail than their Western counter parts. The only good thing is that they age well and have super soft and supple skin as opposed to sun burned and rough skin of a typical white chick.

      • Mighty曹

        The average American woman is the most overweight on Earth.

        • YourSupremeCommander

          yes, if you are talking about middle merika at a walmart, I was talking about chicks in big metro areas and in europe.

          • Mighty曹

            I was adding to the conversation. And it isn’t limited to be some chick in the Midwest. The ‘average’ includes red neck hillbillies to cosmopolitan women.

  • YourSupremeCommander

    Damn, I can feel her pain, but damn, why would you leave them all naked and dead on your fuckin coffee table in the fuckin living room?

  • Ffinisherr

    Wow I can’t even imagine how bad the parents are gonna feel when they find out it wasn’t just one who died..

  • Nono

    That’s so sad :(

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  • bert

    “Nanchang City Honggutan New District Shengmi Town Wenqing Village”

    “The area of the pond in which the tragedy took place is about 20-30 mu [unit of area, 1 mu=0.0667 hectare]”

    I hate when they write like this.

  • Ricky Chen

    Very Sad.

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