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For the love of tragic Mijin: even strangers are moved to help

Show of support ... the Beecroft community has rallied around Mijin Shin's family after the 38-year-old was killed in an accident last week.

Show of support ... the Beecroft community has rallied around Mijin Shin's family after the 38-year-old was killed in an accident last week.

Strangers have held the grieving husband's hand at the accident site. Hot meals have been prepared by neighbours every day for the extended family. An 11-year-old girl's uniform has been taken away for alterations.

Since the death of 38-year-old Mijin Shin in a Beecroft accident last Wednesday, her family have been offered love and support at every turn, an "overwhelming" experience which they say reflects how popular and well-loved Ms Shin was.

We just got the feeling that everybody felt for the situation. It was tremendous 

"Strangers have walked past the place where Mijin was killed and left flowers. When they saw us mourning there, strangers stopped and held Vishal's hand," Niranjan Deodhar, the brother-in-law of Ms Shin's husband Vishal Mital, told smh.com.au.

"Loving spirit" .. Mijin Shin, pictured with her husband Vishal, and her daughters Meera and Kelly.

"Loving spirit" .. Mijin Shin, pictured with her husband Vishal, and her daughters Meera and Kelly.

"We just got the feeling that everybody felt for the situation. It was tremendous."

Just four days before the birthday of her 11-month-old daughter Meera, Ms Shin was crossing Hannah Street near Beecroft Road when she was hit by a school bus.

Meera, whom Ms Shin was carrying, was unhurt, knocked aside by her mother. Her older sister, 11-year-old Kelly, who was on the school bus, cradled her in her arms as bystanders tried to keep their mother alive.

Today, Ms Shin's family will remember her at a private funeral in Macquarie Park.

But they say the generosity they have encountered in the past week was already a living example of Ms Shin's loving spirit - as a family member, friend and childcare worker.

"You can tell now when the time has come unfortunately for the family to need support, that the strength of that love has come through," Mr Deodhar said.

"If you haven't been in touch with someone, why would you go and offer so much support after [so many] years, unless the care that your kids got for her was good."

Ms Shin, from South Korea, moved to Australia from the capital Seoul in 1994 when she was 20.

An accounting graduate, she spurned the chance to crunch numbers for a career in childcare, working as a nanny and then at a Castle Hill daycare centre.

Positive and trusting, Ms Shin cared for every child as if they were her own, Mr Deodhar said.

"I could see how kids related to her that she was getting it right. She was doing it with a genuine smile and it was never a chore," he said.

In 2006, Ms Shin met Mr Mital, 38, a finance executive in the telecommunications industry and, in 2009, they married.

Last year, they moved to a house on a quiet street in Beecroft and Ms Shin, who became a full-time mother, devoted her days to her daughters.

On Anzac Day this year, the couple watched baby Meera take her first steps during a family picnic.

Mr Deodhar said yesterday that the toddler was being cared for by both sets of grandparents.

Her birthday celebration, which Ms Shin was planning for weeks, went ahead on May 6 with Ms Shin's mothers' group - a support club for mothers that give birth about the same time.

"That group had decided to celebrate a common birthday for all the babies," Mr Deodhar said. "It takes courage to have your child's birthday knowing full well that you have a grieving family in your midst."

For Kelly, Meera's oldest sister, going to school at Beecroft Public has been a source of strength and familiarity. Her year 6 classmates and their parents have closed ranks around her, offering to buy her lunch for the next year, drive her to school every day and to alter her uniform.

"Right now, just thinking that someone else is thinking so far ahead when we can't has been amazing," Mr Deodhar said.

twitter This reporter is on Twitter @curious_scribe

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