Speaking at the family home Susan Taylor's father, 68-year-old Arthur Wright, spoke movingly of his daughter.
"I'm devastated. I've lost the best person in the world. She was just wonderful."
Mr Wright said his daughter had given up her full-time job to carry out charitable work and was working part-time as an accountant.
She had also done wing-walking and a parachute jump, and was a qualified rally driver."She was certainly not a boring accountant," he said.
Mr Wright revealed that his paramedic son David, Mrs Taylor's brother, was on the boat at the time of the swim and battled to save her life.
"David was with her and he was the paramedic, he tried to help.
"He pulled her on to the boat."
Also on the boat was Mrs Taylor's husband, her coach who has been training her since she was eight years old, and a support swimmer.
Two charities have been inundated with donations after a British woman's attempt to the swim the English Channel faltered in its final mile.
The English Channel is one of the world's busiest shipping lanes, used by hundreds of cargo vessels and ferries every day.