News

Surfer dies in Indonesia: ‘Everyone just loved Luke’

TRAGEDY: Former Byron Bay resident Peter Luke, who was killed in a surfing incident off the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, on Monday, seen with his sister Laura.
TRAGEDY: Former Byron Bay resident Peter Luke, who was killed in a surfing incident off the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, on Monday, seen with his sister Laura.

THE death of former Byron Bay resident Pater Luke in a surfing incident off the Indonesian island of Sumbawa on Monday has left many people on the Northern Rivers in mourning.

The popular 27-year-old physical education school teacher and football player moved from Warrnambool, Victoria, to Byron Bay, in 2007, to study teaching at Lismore's Southern Cross University.

In October 2013, Mr Luke was bitten by the travel bug and flew to Canada.

He landed a job at the renowned ski resort of Whistler, where he made many friends.

After about nine months at Whistler, Mr Luke left for Australia, via Indonesia, for a surfing holiday with two mates.

It was there the trio took a boat trip from Sumbawa, searching for the perfect wave, when they discovered huge five-metre barrels at Scar Reef.

West Sumbawa police chief Teddy Hendyawan Syarif said the surf at the spot was huge at the time Mr Luke was killed.

"The victim's death was caused by a wave smashing into him, which at that time was massive, up to five metres high," he told reporters.

Surfers are lured to the island of Sumbawa, west of Bali, by the promise of huge perfect waves that break over shallow reefs.

Physical education teacher at Ballina's Southern Cross School Paul Kirkland said he met Mr Luke when he moved to Byron Bay and began studying at SCU.

They quickly became close mates when Mr Luke joined Lennox Head Football club, where Mr Kirkland coached and played.

"He was just a true gentleman, he really was," he said.

"He didn't have a bad fault and everyone just loved him.

"He had a really infectious smile and you couldn't help but warm to him."

Once he graduated and started working at Southern Cross School and Richmond River High, casually, Mr Kirkland said Mr Luke became very popular with students and colleagues.

"It was a big shock because he was going to be home in a week or two."

Mr Luke's body is being flown to Warrnambool, where his funeral is expected to be held.

He is survived by his parents Allan and Mary and his sister Laura.

Topics:  dies, indonesia, surfer



BEACH SAFETY: Can you reduce your risk of a shark attack?

Yesterday's attack reminded us that sharks are still out there, despite a quiet year so far. There are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of an unwanted encounter.

Some tips and helpful apps to help you be safe

Local Partners

PREVIEW: Luke Cage origin story is a strong addition to MCU

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage.

MIKE Colter stars as latest Marvel superhero to get his own series.

Kate goes down fighting in heated Survivor elimination

Australian Survivor contestant Kate Campbell.

YOGA teacher's 'good guys' alliance fails to get off the ground.

Emily Blunt's (almost) singing career

Emily Blunt nearly became the British Britney Spears.

Angelina is blocking calls from Brad Pritt

Angelina Jolie has reportedly blocked Brad Pitt's number.

Encounters on stage at Lennox Head

COMING SOON: Dancers Elizabeth Venn and Tess Eckert are part of Encounters, the upcoming performance by SPRUNG!! Integrated Dance Theatre Inc.

By Sprung!! Dance Theatre Inc

Apocalyptica 'seek and destroy' sceptics with 'master' set

Apocalyptica play Max Watts in Brisbane on their Shadowmaker Tour.

Review of final show of Apocalyptica's tour

Buyers forking out millions

Owners benefiting from undersupplied Northern Rivers market

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

New $33 million development planned for Ballina Shire

The site of a proposed seniors living development at Skennars Head.

Plans include 211 homes, clubhouse and recreational facilities

SOLD: Historic hotel finds new owner

Post Office Hotel Grafton

Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner

Pub in new hands and heading in a brand new direction