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Sydney drowned boy's family speak of grief

AAP logoAAP 29/12/2016

Friends and family of a 14-year-old boy have spoken of their heartache and grief after emergency services recovered a body believed to be his from a popular Sydney beach.

Tui Gallaher disappeared after he and his cousin got into trouble while swimming at Maroubra beach on Tuesday night.

Emergency services called off the search for the missing teenager on Friday after a body was found near Maroubra Beach, close to where the teen went missing.

"Don't worry he's resting is God's arms right now. Love you, Aunty," Katrina Fonuku Tamano Gallaher posted on Facebook.

"Truly sorry to hear of your tragedy but he is resting in God's arms now at peace and the love people have for such a beautiful gentle young man will shine brightly," Billie Jean said.

"Prayers of strength for you and your family during this time. Our deepest condolences," wrote Lauri Laporga.

An online crowd-funding campaign to offer financial aid to Tui's family has raised more than $4000 in the past day.

While the body is yet to be formally identified, the search has been called off.

Police will prepare a brief for the corner.

Earlier, Tui's mother spoke of her heartache after finding out her son was missing.

"You don't know you can run out of tears until something like this happens," Sandra Tamano told reporters on Thursday.

The teen's cousin was pulled from the surf by a passer-by shortly before Tui vanished.

The man who rescued his cousin tried to look for Tui but could not find him, police say.

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