A huge hole in our lives - Family of Mullumbimby man killed in car accident reflect on their lost ?nature boy
By ZOE SATHERLEY
MAKING a coffin for their best mate is how Liam Wright's friends are honouring his memory.
The rosewood and camphor laurel has been lovingly sanded. The dovetail joins painstakingly sculpted. A silky oak surfboard for the top is taking shape.
"We wanted to do this for Liam," said surfing mate, Andy Ceglinski, of South Golden Beach.
"Our whole group is totally shocked by the deaths of Liam and Reece (Jones).
"They were two of the nicest guys you could ever hope to have as friends. We are all just shattered."
Liam, 20, of Mullum- bimby, was critically injured when his car, a Ford Falcon station wagon, being driven by Reece, 19, of Ocean Shores, lost control on a wet road while overtaking another car on Mullumbimby Road last Saturday week. The car skidded, spun out and crashed into a tree.
Liam was rushed to Royal Brisbane Hospital where he was placed on life support as his family and friends kept a bedside vigil. He died from massive head injuries on Saturday.
Reece died at the scene and was buried last Friday.
Liam's mother, Kerri Wright, walks into her son's room to proudly show off all the things that defined the precious son Liam was.
"That boy was my best friend. I always looked forward to him coming home. He and I had the easiest relationship. I never had any issues with Liam," she said.
"He was very affectionate and had a great sense of humour. He loved his mum and was not afraid of showing it."
A typical Piscean, water was Liam's element. His room is filled with surfing paraphernalia -? longboards, short-boards, bodyboards, snorkels, flippers, spearguns. In short, anything to do with the sea.
Kerri recalls the first time Liam crawled into the ocean aged six months. The waves lapped over his head but he just kept going until he was afloat and dog paddling like he had done it all his life.
Another time Kerri came home to find her kitchen cupboards devoid of any vessel that would hold water -? Liam had filled them all with goldfish.
"Liam was a real nature boy. He loved animals and being outdoors, barefoot and shirt free. He hated anything that restricted his freedom. He never wore a wetsuit, even in winter. And he loved kids," Kerri said.
Brother Rodney, 33, praised his brother's ability to triumph over personal adversity and health issues to become a self- confidant and successful young man and skilled tradesman.
"He was passionate about his work as a plasterer. He'd wake up at 5am rearing to go. He loved being with the boys and the mateship that grew from work relationships," Rodney said.
Brother Joel, 28, was also close with Liam.
"I feel so proud of what he achieved in his short life. He had a real passion for living," Joel said.
"He loved life and lived it to the full. He was always happy, always had a smile on his face.
"He will leave a huge hole in our lives."
Liam's funeral will be held at the family property on Friday at 1pm.