The Teenage Californian Countess Swept Out to Sea in 1956

Camilla.

On 29 December 1956, Countess Camilla von Schönborn-Buchheim fell victim to the current of the sea and drowned at Strawberry Beach near Half Moon Bay (San Mateo), California. She was only seventeen years-old. Residents of the locale went on the record to state that many visitors to this beach had suffered the same fate. The countess had been with two friends when the tragedy occurred; one of these friends was also captured by the tide, but was able to be saved by the other friend. It was not until 31 December that Camilla’s body was found by rescuers, as their search was hampered by the fog that often descended on that part of the Bay Area coast. 

Camilla and Friedrich Karl.

Born on 30 July 1939 at Graz, Countess Camilla Maria Helene Sofie Carolina von Schönborn-Buchheim was the only child of Count Friedrich Karl von Schönborn-Buchheim (1914-2011) and Countess Camilla Chorinsky, Baroness von Ledske (1918-1961), who married in 1938. Camilla’s parents divorced in 1945. In 1951, Camilla’s father married Edith Carpenter Macy (b.1927), whose mother Lydia married the Prince di San Faustino. Camilla was a student at Sarah Dix Hamlin School, where she was a senior. She lived with her father and stepmother at 2710 Scott Street in San Francisco. Camilla was slated to graduate from the private girls’ school in June 1957, and she planned to attend university. Camilla was said to be a fine student and was popular with her classmates. 

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