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HomesingaporeKayaker whose body was recovered off Sentosa was former nurse who founded...

Kayaker whose body was recovered off Sentosa was former nurse who founded local soap business

SINGAPORE: A kayaker whose body was found in waters off Sentosa by the Singapore Civil Defence Force on Tuesday afternoon (Oct 24) was the founder of a local business selling handcrafted soaps.

Chew Jia Tian, 33, had been missing since Sunday morning when she capsized and was “swept under” by currents as she was trying to help a fellow male kayaker, a friend who helped the search operation previously told CNA. 

Mr Sim Cher Huey, founder of Kayakasia, told CNA that two kayakers, a man and a woman, capsized between 9.30am and 10am on Sunday off the southern tip of Sentosa, near a “particularly tricky place where the currents, the moving water, meet these stationary barriers”.

Ms Chew and the male kayaker, who was eventually rescued by a passing boat, were part of a group of three who had launched from Sentosa with their own sea kayaks towards the Southern Islands. A fourth sea kayaker happened to meet them on the waters and joined, said Mr Sim, who clarified that he did not organise the tour.

Related:

Body of kayaker found in waters off Sentosa, two days after she went missing

Missing kayaker was trying to rescue companion when she was 'swept under' by currents off Sentosa

FORMER NURSE TURNED ENTREPRENEUR

Ms Chew was inspired to start Rough Beauty when she was a former staff nurse at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, the entrepreneur told online publication Vulcan Post in an interview from 2021. The healthcare job required her to wash her hands regularly. 

“I started Rough Beauty in 2014 when I was looking for simple and sustainable bath and body products. We use natural ingredients such as herbs, spices and essential oils,” she said in a video from 2019 on local florist Far East Flora’s Facebook page.

“Ingredients like these are more sustainable for the earth and less harmful for the skin.”

Ms Chew also told Vulcan Post that she decided to run her business full-time after completing her nursing degree in 2016. The Singapore-based business was already taking off that year and became profitable soon after she made it her full-time gig. 

Mr Alvin Ng, who rescued the male kayaker while on his way to a fishing spot on Sunday morning, previously told CNA that his friend had spotted a capsized kayak and shouted for the captain of their boat to stop. This was “far away” from the blue floating barriers, he added. 

They saw another capsized kayak about 200m to 300m away after the rescue but did not find Ms Chew.

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