[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 October 2006, 16:49 GMT 17:49 UK
Wife's tribute to elephant victim
African elephant
Patrick Smith was trampled to death by an elephant
The wife of a British tourist killed by an elephant while on honeymoon in Kenya, has paid tribute to her "wonderful husband".

Patrick Smith, 34, from London, was trampled to death in the Masai Mara game reserve on Sunday while on a nature trail with his wife Julie.

The couple had been married for just a week when the tragedy happened.

Mrs Smith, who was not injured in the stampede, described her husband as "loving, generous, humorous".

In a statement she said: "On Sunday 1st October Paddy Smith was killed in a tragic incident involving a group of elephants while we were on honeymoon in Kenya.

"We were married only on 23rd September."

'Tragic accident'

She continued: "Paddy was loving, generous, humorous, and a wonderful husband. He was also a devoted son, brother, nephew, uncle, cousin, and friend to many, many people.

"His tragic early death will leave a huge gap in all our lives."

Map showing Kenya and the Masai Mara game reserve

Mrs Smith also requested that the media leave the family in peace to allow them to grieve.

The incident occurred during an early morning walking safari the couple had taken along with a guide, when the small group of elephants they were observing was startled.

Jake Grieves-Cook, chairman of the Kenya Tourist Board, said he did not know what had startled the animals.

"They [the couple] were downwind and thought they were a safe distance. Elephants have very poor eyesight so this was not an attack. It was a tragic accident," he said.

Mr Smith worked in the IT department at international media group Reuters, where Mrs Smith also works.

A Reuters spokesman said: "Clearly it is a very tragic situation, we are sending our condolences to the family, we are trying to help them practically as best we can."

On Monday, a spokeswoman for the Kenya Wildlife Service, Connie Maina, said efforts were being made to track the elephant.

She said the incident took place a short distance from upmarket encampment Richard's Camp, where the couple were reported to have been staying.

In 2000, another Briton was trampled to death by an elephant in the Masai Mara reserve after he ventured out of a secure compound to take a photograph of it.




VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
What is thought to have happened on the reserve




SEE ALSO

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific