The price of being a great father
By Brian Bigg
IT'S not easy to have a quiet beer at the top pub in Byron Bay with Terry Hicks on a%Saturday afternoon.
For a start, the man who is probably the most famous father in Australia at the%moment, doesn't drink.
But the main difficulty comes because of his well-known face. Our conversation kept being interrupted by people coming up to shake his hand and offer him support and encouragement.
Regardless of what side of the political fence people are on and regardless of what they might think of David Hicks, there's no doubt in anyone's mind Terry Hicks has shown himself over the past five years to be the greatest dad a son could have.
Mr Hicks was on the Northern Rivers to speak at Bangalow's Fatherhood Festival.
In front of more than 100 people, Mr Hicks was interviewed by well-known ABC Radio presenter Mick O'Regan. He told of his struggle with the Australian and American governments to get a fair trial for his son after he was captured in Afghanistan in 2002.
As a parent, Mr Hicks said the hardest thing during his son's time in Cuba was the lack of contact.
His three-page letters would be censored to half-a-page, the authorities even removing phrases such as 'hang in there, we love you'.
He's able to visit his son in jail in Adelaide every weekend now and is looking forward to the time when David is home.
The printing shop manager has remained stoical throughout the ordeal.
"Kids have their own destiny. We can prompt them and try to guide them, but they are going to end up where their own destiny takes them," Mr Hicks said.