News

Shark attack rekindles memories for 1979 rescuer

LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Bill Sylvester came to the rescue of Michael Oliver in 1979.
LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Bill Sylvester came to the rescue of Michael Oliver in 1979.

THE fatal attack on Tuesday is almost a mirror-image of an attack that occurred at the Pass in 1979, pioneer diving instructor, Bill Sylvester said.

Mr Sylvester, who now lives at Alstonville, rescued 18-year-old Michael Oliver on September 14, 1979 when Michael was attacked on the right leg by a shark.

The young man survived, but the memories live on.

"I can still remember him calling for help; there was this big splash and then his call," Mr Sylvester said

"The difference is one boy was lucky (to have survived).

"We were able to get to Michael to stem the bleeding in time.

"There are many parallels to what happened this week, and it should ring bells for Byron Bay to be careful in September when bait fish attract sharks into the bay.

"This time of year you get a lot of small bait fishing running - mostly pilchards, and the rain may also have seen mullets come in from the river.

"I am not convinced the shark in either attack was a great white. In both cases, the shark let go (of the victim). It wasn't vicious like a pointer attack.

"I think what we have to remember is that the number of fatalities are very low in numbers considering the number of people who swim here."

LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Bill Sylvester came to the rescue of Michael Oliver in 1979.
LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Bill Sylvester came to the rescue of Michael Oliver in 1979.

Topics:  byron bay, editors picks, shark attack




REVEALED: Fate of Lismore's destroyed playground

The damage at Heritage Park Lismore following last night's fire.

Mayor: "We still need to figure out where the money will come from"

Dutton 'sympathetic' to allowing Lennox family to stay

Kai Tippett and Hayley Niedzielska with Sienna Tippett, 6, of Lennox Head, are appealling to the Australian Government not to deport them. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

Peter Dutton discusses family's deportation issue on radio

Splendour goers using dating app Tinder to score drugs

Punters at Splendour in the Grass 2016 at Byron Bay. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

"90% of tinder groups at Splendour are people looking for drugs"

Latest deals and offers

Lindsay Lohan 'calls off engagement'

Lohan reportedly called off her engagement to Russian millionaire

Rob Kardashian 'neglected' by Blac Chyna

Friends say they are now 'back in love'

Ngaiire: "I miss Lismore...”

ON STAGE: Former Northern Rivers resident Ngaiire during her set at Splendour.

Singer Ngaiire opens up at Splendour in the Grass

Isla Fisher: I don't like talking about my private life

Isla Fisher shut down TV hosts when they asked about her husband

Mariah Carey: I 'can't believe' Prince has gone

'Prince was one of the best people I've met'

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started