12/16/2009 Maurice Bede Philips - New Zealand - ***Fatal***

Listing of the Shark Attack Related Incidents occurring in 2009. 2009 Shark Attacks

12/16/2009 Maurice Bede Philips - New Zealand - ***Fatal***

Postby alb » Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:25 am

Friends, family resume search for kayaker

Family and friends of missing fisherman Maurice Bede Philips, known as Wazza, will return to the Whangamata coastline today searching for the "happy-go-lucky guy" who they fear drowned after his kayak sank on Wednesday afternoon.

The surf life saving rescue boats and the police dive squad resumed the search for the missing 24-year-old Ngaruawahia man early today after an extensive search of the Whangamata bay and coastline failed to find him.

Mr Philips' friend Norm, who was on the kayak when it sank and managed to swim to safety, was understood to be in shock and devastated about the tragedy.

The 30-year-old from Cambridge continued to walk the coastline in the hope of spotting his mate.

Surf life saving club member Richard Scelly said Norm was dropped back on Hauturu (Clark) Island, 300 metres from where the two-man kayak sank, to join the search for his colleague and fishing buddy.

Norm and Mr Philips, a former Ngaruawahia High School student, were in Whangamata working for Doug Stamp Water Services on a waste water irrigation system for several weeks. They had gone fishing after the tools they were using had been stolen earlier in the day.

The pair paddled out from the harbour entrance about 4pm on Wednesday wearing heavy clothes and without lifejackets or wetsuits. They anchored near Clark Island.

When water filled the kayak both tried to swim for the Island but it wasn't until Norm reached it that he realised Mr Philips was no longer behind him.

Mr Philips' aunt, Georgie Templeton, said the family was heartbroken.

"Everyone is understandably in shock, absolutely devastated. Maurice was an only child. He and his father were particularly close, sharing the love of fishing.

"His parents are heartbroken as are all of us."

She said the "happy go-lucky guy" would be "very, very much missed".

Speaking from the family's Waingaro home last night, Ms Templeton said Mr Philips' mother Maureen and his girlfriend Angela King, whom he lived with in Ngaruawahia, spent yesterday searching and planned to resume the search today.

"The reality for us is there is very, very little hope of finding him alive now ...

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Re: 12/16/2009 Maurice Bede Philips - New Zealand - ***Fata

Postby alb » Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:28 am

Great white shark mauled kayaker after capsize

A great white shark attacked the man either before or after he drowned.

A Waikato man was mauled by a great white shark after he fell from a kayak on a fishing trip, a coroner's report has revealed.

It is not certain if Maurice Bede Philips, 24, of Ngaruawahia, was attacked by the shark before or after he drowned.

Mr Philips had a large bite on the upper thigh - consistent with one from a 3m great white - that caused huge tissue and blood loss.

Despite the uncertainty, the incident in December 2009 was considered the most recent shark attack in New Zealand waters until this week when a shark bit surfer Peter Garrett, 42, in the leg in Taranaki.

Mr Philips' death had been reported as a drowning, but details of the shark attack are contained in the report from coroner Peter Ryan released to the Weekend Herald.

Mr Philips and a friend were fishing from a kayak near Clark Island when it capsized and they had to swim to shore.

The coroner said a pathologist had identified drowning as the cause of death.

But the large amount of tissue loss from shark bites and the resulting blood loss made it uncertain if Mr Philips died before or after the attack. The evidence was "evenly balanced".

Images of the bite marks on Mr Philips' legs were sent to Department of Conservation shark expert Clinton Duffy, who said a 2.8m-3m great white would have been responsible.

He believed the position of the bite on Mr Philips' upper thigh was consistent with an attack from below, suggesting he could have been swimming on the surface when attacked.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/
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