Survival

Couple reveal ‘last photo’ from White Island

The picture was taken 15 minutes before the devastating eruption

A couple who were seriously injured in the White Island volcano eruption have shared the ‘last photo’ taken of them before their lives were forever changed.

Americans Ivy Kohn Reed and Rick Reed took the relaxed and happy snap during their day trip to New Zealand’s White Island just 15 minutes before the volcano suddenly erupted, killing 21 tourists and injuring 26 others.

The couple, who suffered severe burns, shared the image as part of their efforts to raise money for their medical treatment and rehabilitation though a GoFundMe.

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The couple before their fateful trip (Credit: GoFundMe/Ivy Kohn Reed/Rick Reed)

A message from Ivy Kohn Reed on the fundraising page says, ‘This is the last picture taken of us before our lives changed forever. Approximately 15 minutes after this was taken, the White Island Volcano erupted, burying us in hot volcanic ash and toxic gases.

‘We survived, were rescued and spent almost 8 weeks in a New Zealand Hospital receiving critical care treatment. Our dream vacation turned into a nightmare that we are still trying to comprehend. The next year will be the hardest of our lives while we try to rehab and regain as much functionality as possible.’

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Rick Reed (right) shared an image from his hospital bed (Credit: GoFundMe/Ivy Kohn Reed/Rick Reed)

The couple are now back home in the US and Ms Kohn Reed added it was a ‘scary time’ as the survivors learned how much they would be able to do independently as they come to terms with their life-changing injuries.

The pair have both undergone grueling skin grafts and it’s understood Mr Reed faced re-learning to walk as a result of his injuries.

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