Girl, three, swept to her death over waterfall while playing in river

The heartbroken parents of a three-year-old girl who died after being swept off a 400-foot waterfall have told how they desperately tried to rescue her.

Keith and Sheri Newswanger, from Denver, Pennsylvania, said Nevaeh Jade had been playing in the sand when she fell into Whitewater Falls in North Carolina.

The devastated couple said they tried to grab her but ‘the current was so strong’ it dragged her downstream around 6 p.m. on Sunday.

Cops recovered the youngster’s body around 1 a.m. the next morning after it got ‘entrapped in an area of the waterfall.’

Her parents shared a heartbreaking photograph of the smiling youngster with her sister Tania on a GoFundMe yesterday.

They said: ‘We decided to go on a hike, we hiked up the trail to a river, above the waterfall.

‘Nevaeh was playing in the sand nearby and slipped and fell in the water. We desperately tried to rescue her but the current was so strong and it swept her down the river and over the falls where the angels caught her.

‘She is now our precious angel, so radiant in the presence of God. Her name is heaven spelled backward. She was truly a piece of heaven to all who knew her.’

The family had decided to go hiking as Keith Newswanger took a break from working on a construction site 25 miles away in Oconee County, South Carolina.

They called 911 when the tragedy struck and first responders from Jackson, Transylvania, Haywood, Henderson and Oconee County raced to the waterfall.

But the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office said: ‘Just prior to night fall on Sunday, rescuers located the child deceased and entrapped in an area of the waterfall.’