Video Captures Tsunami Pulling Band Into the Sea

Lead singer of Seventeen band's only known survivor
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 23, 2018 6:39 AM CST

Moments before tsunami waves struck a beach in Indonesia, the band Seventeen was playing a beachside concert. Moments later, screams. Reuters reports some 200 employees of the state electricity utility and their families were gathered at the year-end party at the Tanjung Lesung Beach Resort on Java's western tip when the tsunami hit, collapsing the stage and pulling band members into the sea. Lead singer Riefian Fajarsyah survived; the bassist (Muhammad Awal Purbani), guitarist (Herman Sikumbang), road manager (Oki Wijaya), and a crew member (Ujang) are dead, and the drummer remains missing. The Jakarta-based band had been together for 19 years.

In a video posted to Instagram, Fajarsyah said his wife, whose 26th birthday is today, is among the missing, reports the AFP. Per local media, Fajarsyah says he saw two dozen corpses around him when he was initially pulled into the sea. A crew member who survived by holding fast to part of the stage described the ordeal. "Underwater I could only pray 'Jesus Christ help!' In the final seconds I almost ran out of breath." As for Perusahaan Listrik Negara, the electric utility announced 29 employees and family members are dead and another 13 are missing. (The tsunami is thought to have been triggered by an underwater landslide that was itself triggered by the Anak Krakatau volcano's eruption.)

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