British teacher on ‘bucket list’ murdered by ‘water rats’ in the Amazon

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Amazon rainforest
A tree is pictured at sunrise in the village of Rio Pardo next to Bom Futuro National Forest, in the district of Porto Velho, Rondonia State, Brazil, September 2, 2015. Reuters/Nacho Doce

A British school teacher on a “bucket list” adventure in the Amazon had predicted her own death before she was murdered by armed pirates. The woman was shot and killed by robbers, Brazilian police revealed.

Emma Kelty was killed in a lawless pocket of the South American jungle. Her death has been confirmed by the British Foreign Office.

On September 10, Kelty updated his Facebook timeline. "So in or near coari (100km away) I will have my boat stolen and i will be killed too,” she wrote.

The 43-year-old reportedly gave up her job as a head teacher to become a full-time explorer. She paddled solo 6,500 kilometres down the Amazon. Brazilian police said she was shot by “water rats.” They dumped her body in the river.

A 17-year-old local boy was arrested on suspicion of Kelty’s murder. The teenager allegedly told the police that the victim was shot twice with a sawn-off shotgun. Six other members of the gang are currently being chased by the authorities.

Kelty was described by her family members as an active and determined sister who challenged herself. Among her latest adventures were the ones on the Pacific Coast Trail, as well as in the South Pole and Amazon River.

"In a world that is today a much smaller place, the explorer in our sister found herself seeking ways to prove that challenges were achievable,” Kelty's brothers Piers and Giles and her sister Natasha said, according to Brisbane Times. They added that they are extremely proud of Kelty, and that her strength will be sorely missed.

There were local reports claiming several attacks by drugs gangs and pirates in the area where Kelty was murdered. A Brazilian police spokesman said they believe Kelty was "shot and killed while she was camping on an island near the village of Lauro Sodré.”

Kelty’s possessions were stolen, including a phone, a tablet computer and a GoPro video camera. Her attackers reportedly tried to sell her gadgets.

In 2015, she decided to pursue a bucket list of adventures after her father died of cancer. Her mother also died of cancer in 1991.

Some months after the death of her father, Kelty wrote on her blog it was time to start on a bucket list. She embarked on a 4000-kilometre solo hike in May 2015 from the bottom to the top of the United States. It reportedly started at the Mexican border and ended at Canada.