New Zealand man Duncan Craw, pictured with wife Taylia and son Levi, is believed to have been killed by a shark in Australia. Photo / Provided
A New Zealand man was found dead after an alleged shark attack during a snorkeling trip in South Australia.
Duncan Craw’s Kiwi family said it was impossible to describe the hole a “cheerful, loving, helpful” and naughty man would leave in the lives of those he knows.
Relatives of the 32-year-old man said he moved to Australia from New Zealand at a young age before recently traveling to South Australia from his home in Warrnambool, Victoria, on a camping trip with his family.
However, while snorkeling in Port MacDonnell on a beautiful Thursday on a beautiful day, his wife Taylia lost her sight.
“The exact circumstances of Duncan’s disappearance are not yet known but given the discovery of a damaged wetsuit and sightings of the Great White in the area on Thursday, it appears that a shark was involved,” the family said in a statement.
His body has been found.
“Duncan loves to snorkel and accepts the dangers he may face at sea. He is very unlucky this time,” the statement said.
New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed it had been contacted in connection with Craw’s death.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has not yet been approached by Duncan Craw’s family for consular assistance,” said a spokesman for MFAT.
Craw is married and has a young son named Levi.
South Australian police inspector Campbell Hill told local media outlets that an emergency team was called to the scene around 5pm last Thursday.
“We were called to a reef break just outside Port MacDonnell where we were met there by the family,” Hill told reporters.
“The man could not be found and a large-scale search was initiated involving police officers, members of the water operations and air wing, local state emergency services and fisheries.
“There are also lots of locals helping with the search, standing on paddle boards and fishing boats, or standing on the beach with binoculars.”
A police helicopter spotted a Great White Shark in the area that night.
The next morning the search team finds a badly damaged wetsuit along with other equipment that Craw is known to have used.
“Unfortunately we have collected them all and it clearly describes a fatal shark attack,” said Hill.
Craw went missing just three days before his 33rd birthday.
He is described as a very hardworking and dedicated operations manager at an agricultural company in Warrnambool, where he grew up after moving from New Zealand at a young age.
“When he’s not farming, spending time with family, or working around the property he bought with his wife Taylia, he likes to meet friends and watch or play sports, including cricket for the Woolsthorpe Cricket Club,” his family said.
“He is also Levi’s best father and a beautiful husband and best friend to Tay, his high school sweetheart.”
“She is a cheerful, affectionate and helpful child. She is a good and brash brother to her sister. She is a fun, naughty and supportive partner who has a heart of gold.”
Craw’s death came when eight Australians were killed by sharks last year – the largest since 1929.
It also happened when 19-year-old Kaelah Marlow died at Bowentown Beach in New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty earlier this month.