Makye with his girlfriend Shanika Smolders asleep by his side in hospital.
Makye with his girlfriend Shanika Smolders asleep by his side in hospital.

'I thought I would die': Teen stabbed at bush rave speaks

THE teen stabbed at a bush doof in a state forest north of Coffs Harbour has praised his friends for saving his life.

Makye Muir from Sawtell was stabbed six times at the party at Wedding Bells State Forest, Bucca, just after midnight on Saturday August 24.

The 18-year-old was there with up to 200 people when he noticed a scuffle and intervened to try and break it up.

"I didn't even know I had been stabbed until somebody yelled out 'There's somebody slashing'," he said.

He looked down and saw blood on his body, arms and face.

Best friend and 'dezo' (designated driver) Noah Rhodes kept pressure on what appeared to be the deepest cut to his ribs.

"As he held me I felt my lung collapse."

Noah and his other mates, including girlfriend Shanika Smolders, helped him into the back of a car and called the police and ambulance.

They also had the presence of mind to record their GPS coordinates.

"I thought I was going to die in the back of that car.

"Noah was just telling me to keep my eyes open and keep breathing."

The boys have been best friends since their time at Toormina High.

 

Makye Muir from Sawtell was stabbed six times at the party at Wedding Bells State Forest. Photo by Trevor Veale.
Makye Muir from Sawtell was stabbed six times at the party at Wedding Bells State Forest. Photo by Trevor Veale.

When the paramedics arrived Makye heard a new term he's clearly still haunted by.

"They said I had an open sucking wound."

A deep slash on the upper arm near the vital brachial artery was also of huge concern.

By the time they got to hospital his mother Suanne Muir, who is a nurse, was already there.

Since the attack she has witnessed the impact on all those involved and has been in contact with Headspace, an organisation for youth mental health, to help them deal with the trauma.

"One boy who came to visit Makye in hospital just completely broke down," she said.

Makye has two older brothers: Lloyd (22) and Flynn (20). They grew up west of Dorrigo and attended Dundurrabin Public School until their father passed away when Makye was 10 and they moved to Sawtell.

At the hospital the focus was on the wounded lung and the surgical team went to work inserting a chest drain; a procedure too much even for experienced nurse Suanne.

"I had to walk away for that."

 

Makye with best friend Noah Rhodes who kept Makye talking and alert as he lapsed in and out of consciousness. Also by his bedside are friends Brad and Brent.
Makye with best friend Noah Rhodes who kept Makye talking and alert as he lapsed in and out of consciousness. Also by his bedside are friends Brad and Brent.

Surgery took almost three hours as they cleaned and closed up the wounds with about 30 stitches.

After four days he was released from hospital and has been resting up at home.

On Sunday Suanne held what she terms a 'live wake' to support those impacted by the traumatic events.

Makye accepts the bush gathering was illegal. He has attended a number of similar events and says registered festivals can be costly with tickets as much as $300.

As girlfriend Shanika explains they've all attracted some harsh criticism.

"People say things like 'now do you see why bush duffs are illegal' and things like that."

Suanne says that's the last thing they need.

"They just need love, not judgment."

As Makye recovers he is focusing on his goal of joining the army to become a recovery mechanic.

Proud mum Suanne thinks he would be perfectly suited to the role.

"He's always wanted to help people and would look out for people being bullied.

"I call him my Sawty Soldier."



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