SARAS Wati, 49, of Nakama in Macuata could only wish for a miracle to bring her eldest son back to life after his body was discovered in Naleba River over the weekend.
Ms Wati, a widow, could not stop crying when a team from this newspaper went to her home yesterday.
Her son, Roneel Kumar, 23, had been the man of the house after his father passed away after a short illness in 2000.
Roneel was 10 when he took up the fatherly role of taking care of his mother and three siblings.
"Roneel went to his sister's home in Naleba to celebrate her wedding anniversary and while there, he decided to go fishing on Friday despite being told not to," Ms Wati said.
"He told me that he was going to return tomorrow (Tuesday) but unfortunately, he died.
"He was epileptic but his sickly condition never stopped him from knocking on doors to ask for any form of casual work for income. Our neighbours usually gave him ordinary jobs so he could support us.
"During crushing season, he cuts cane to pay for his siblings' educational items."
Ms Wati said Roneel was always ready to do any kind of work to support his family.
"I am a sickly woman and I depend on Roneel for everything.
"Now that he is gone, I really don't know what to do and who to turn to for help.
"I really miss my son dearly and I only wish he was still alive," she said.
Police spokeswoman Ana Naisoro said the victim was last seen near Naleba River at about 5pm on Friday.
Ms Naisoro said the victim had earlier gone out fishing about 9am and after he failed to return a search was conducted.
Deputy divisional police commander northern SSP Fulori Rainibogi yesterday said Roneel's body was retrieved from the river on Saturday morning.
The post-mortem examination is yet to be conducted.