News

Jet ski rider hails his heroes

Danny Buxton with his rescuers, Alexandra Headland Surf Club members Lex Heilbronn and Shane Baird.
Danny Buxton with his rescuers, Alexandra Headland Surf Club members Lex Heilbronn and Shane Baird. Cade Mooney

DANNY Buxton never thought he would ever see Shane Baird and Lex Heilbronn again.

The 40-year-old owes the Alexandra Headland lifesavers his life after a freak accident in the Maroochy River mouth almost ended it two weeks ago.

He was reunited yesterday with his saviours at Sunshine Private Hospital in Buderim, where Mr Buxton is recovering from a broken right femur.

The broken bone had missed nicking his femoral artery by a mere 1.5mm.

On Labour Day, May 7, the last day of the surf life saving season, Mr Buxton's jet ski flipped and landed on him after he hit a wave, breaking his leg.

As his friends struggled to deal with the situation, Mr Baird and Mr Heilbronn cruised by on an IRB.

They were on a northern patrol to the river mouth.

They put Mr Buxton into the IRB and took him to the nearby Maroochydore Surf Club, where an ambulance was waiting.

"I really want to encourage others to say thanks to those around them," Mr Buxton said.

"These guys were absolute champions, just real-life heroes. I kept passing out from the pain but what they did for me was incredible.

"I feel very fortunate to be alive ... if it wasn't for them I wouldn't be here.

"I think we should promote our heroes more, including the staff here at the hospital and the paramedics."

Mr Buxton hoped to be out of hospital by Friday and off crutches in eight weeks.

Full recovery could take up to 12 months.

Speaking about the accident that brought them all together, a modest Mr Baird said he was just doing his job as a volunteer surf lifesaver.

"It's just part of the role," he said.

"We were lucky to be going by at that time. It would have been tough for his mates to get him back to shore with his injury."

Mr Heilbronn, the IRB captain for the club, said it was a horrendous injury.

"When you're stuck out in the water like that it can be hard to get someone that injured on to a jet ski," he said.

"He could have been in a fair bit of trouble so it's lucky we were going by at that time."

To thank the staff at the hospital, Mr Buxton has offered to pay for steaks tomorrow for a special pre- State of Origin lunch.

He is also helping to organise a big screen so that hospital patients can watch the game.

Mr Buxton said he would also make an undisclosed donation to the Alexandra Headland Surf Club as a thankyou.

Topics:  emergency services, hospital, jet ski, rescue, surf life saving



Coffs Harbour a global party capital

FUN SPOT: Coffs Harbour has been named among some of the world’s biggest cities for hosting great festivals and events.

WHAT does Coffs Harbour have in common with Dubai and Philadelphia?

Coffs Harbour a global party capital

PARTY: Coffs Harbour has been named among some of the world's biggest cities for hosting great festivals and events.

WHAT does Coffs Harbour have in common with Dubai, Krakow and Philad

Childcare centre forced to close

TRASHED: Soft drinks used for Rainbow Cottage fundraisers litter the ransacked facility.

Nearly 80 families left in limbo after vandals strike

Local Partners

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E6: Suckas Need Bodyguards review

Rosario Dawson and Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E5: Just To Get A Rep review

Mahershala Ali, centre, in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E4: Step In The Arena review

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

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Rob Kardashian admits his first crush was his sister Kim

Rob Kardashian once had a crush on his sister Kim Kardashian West.

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E3: Who's Gonna Take The Weight

Mahershala Ali in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E2: Code of the Streets review

Simone Missick and Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Beach-side real estate starts at $85k on Fraser Coast

HERVEY BAY REAL ESTATE: You can buy this townhouse in Scarness for under $300k.

Live your beach-living dream locally.

Spring property hard to find

SHORT ON SELLERS: Spring is yet to see the usual influx of vendors keen to sell.

Spring selling season off to a slow start

Coffs region is hot property

The region’s housing market is looking up, with projects on the radar in Tannum Sands and Boyne Island.

Units and houses are both pulling strong returns for Coffs

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