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Tsunami boys open home for children

By David Mercer

Two brothers orphaned in the Boxing Day tsunami 10 years ago are set to open a children's home dedicated to their parents in the country where they lost their lives.

Robert and Paul Forkan were in Sri Lanka with their father Kevin, mother Sandra and two younger siblings when the massive 9.1-magnitude earthquake struck in the Indian Ocean, triggering deadly tidal waves which battered coastlines across Asia.

Robert, who was 17 at the time, survived the disaster along with Paul, then 15, brother Mattie (12), and eight-year-old sister Rosie, but tragically their parents were killed.

Now the older brothers are preparing to officially open a children's home in Mau Gama, Sri Lanka, in the new year with funding from their own flip flop business, Gandys.

Robert, now 27, said Boxing Day would be "slightly more poignant" this year on the 10th anniversary of the disaster, but they were thrilled to be opening the home.

"We spend Boxing Day differently every year. Some years we've been out in India volunteering, some years we've had a family one in the UK," he said.

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