Wollongbar teenager Brock Curtis, pictured with his mother Victoria Mathew, has been nominated for a bravery award for helping his friend Peter Edmonds from the surf at Ballina after a shark attack in April.
Wollongbar teenager Brock Curtis, pictured with his mother Victoria Mathew, has been nominated for a bravery award for helping his friend Peter Edmonds from the surf at Ballina after a shark attack in April. The Northern Star

Award for brave mate of shark attack victim

BROCK CURTIS, the 16-year-old who tried to save his mate from being mauled by a shark earlier this year, has been nominated for a bravery award by the Royal Lifesaving Society.

The attack happened at Ballina's Lighthouse Beach on April 8 after Brock and Peter Edmonds, both of Wollongbar, had gone for an early-morning bodyboarding session.

Brock's mother, Victoria Mathew, said she was "absolutely very proud of him" when she found out about the nomination.

"I know that is one day in his life that he will never forget, and what he did on that day was purely for the love of his best mate", she said.

The awards are presented at Government House in Sydney by the Governor of NSW, Professor Marie Bashir.

Brock was hailed a hero after he went to Peter's aid despite being able to see the shark in the water nearby.

Peter had been bitten badly on the leg by what is thought to have been a bull shark and Brock dragged him to the beach where he performed CPR and called triple-0.

But Peter's injuries were so bad he died from loss of blood at the scene.

Mrs Mathew said Brock missed Peter terribly. "There is a big hole in his world and he is trying very hard to be brave," she said.

Brock is still in regular contact with Peter's family and often hangs out and has meals with them.

"It's made a difference to how he's dealing with the situation," she said.

Mrs Mathew said Brock had his "good days and bad days" and praised the work of the Ballina-Byron Family Centre who had helped their family through a difficult time.

Brock's father has been very sick which has made the situation even more difficult for him.

Mrs Mathew said she also wanted to acknowledge the support of the Northern Rivers community.

Days after the attack Brock's bike was stolen and an anonymous woman from Casino bought him a new one.

"He thought that was so lovely that somebody who didn't know him would do something like that."


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