The family of three had just moved from China to Oregon in July

By Caitlin Keating
September 12, 2018 05:05 PM
Depoe Bay CR: Oregon State Police
Credit: Oregon State Police

A mother and father — who just moved from China to Oregon in July with their 10-year-old daughter — were killed on Sunday after a wave swept them out to sea.

Miaochan Chen, 49, and Wenjun Zhu, 41, of Lake Oswego, Oregon, were picnicking with their daughter at the Otter Crest Loop near Depoe Bay with two other adults when they took a trail down to the rocks, which overlooked the ocean, according to the Oregon State Police.

A wave then washed over the rocks, sweeping the parents out to sea. Their daughter and the other adults were left unharmed.

Lt. Cary Boyd of the Oregon State Police told KGW8 that the group was fishing by the ocean, and as they made their way back, the parents had stopped to take a picture when a wave hit them.

The Oregon State Police and Depoe Bay Fire Rescue arrived a the scene and found both Chen and Zhu unresponsive around 6:30 p.m. They were taken to the Pacific Communities Hospital where they were pronounced dead.

“The other male individual and his wife, Wenjun, had stayed down and were yelling at Miaochan to see if they could get him back up to the rocks when another wave came and took his wife out to the ocean also,” Boyd told the news outlet.

According to the police, the Chinese Consulate helped notify family members. The Department of Human Services in Lincoln County has since placed their daughter in a local foster home and “will be working with the families for her further placement.”