Shark attack doctor back at scene one year on
RETURNING to Cid Harbour a year after saving the life of a shark attack victim was a momentous moment for Dr John Hadok.
In early September this year, nearly 12 months to the day since the attack on Ms Barwick, he found himself back in the picturesque Whitsunday hotspot, attending the same conference that he had fatefully been in town for the previous year.
"I went and sat on a big rock and looked out across the harbour and thought about all those things," he told The Courier-Mail.
"(Going back) did have a bit of an ominous feel to it.
"I did have that sense that the last time I was there, there had been this rather momentous event, followed by two other dreadful events as well which I wasn't involved in."
Dr Hadok is referring to two subsequent shark attacks, one just 24 hours after Ms Barwick's, in which a 12-year-old girl was hospitalised. Melbourne man, Daniel Christidis died on November 5 from another attack in Cid Harbour.
"My thoughts go to the loved ones of the young doctor who was killed, and the family of the child who was badly injured," Dr Hadok said.
The heroic efforts of the Mackay doctor were widely praised, but it's clear Dr Hadok still thinks more about the wellbeing of his patient than himself.
"Remembering that day, and the uncertainty and difficulty of it, but also the delight of knowing that Justine has done so remarkably well since, despite her dreadful injuries," he said.
Dr Hadok said he still chatted frequently with Ms Barwick, who lives in Tasmania, and they were meeting up in a few weeks.
"She lets me know about her triumphs and progress," he said.