Placeholder Content Image

"I felt duped": 95-year-old loses $1.6 million in bank scam

<p>A 95-year-old has been left feeling "sick" after she was scammed out of $1.6 million by heartless scammers claiming to be a bank. </p> <p>In November last year, Harriet Spring received a call from a man who called himself George Thompson, and said he worked for ING Bank. </p> <p>The man gained Harriet's trust over several months, at the difficult time that the great-grandmother was handling the sale of her mother's house.</p> <p>"Over time, I completely thought he was from ING, I had no reason to believe he wasn't," she told <a href="https://9now.nine.com.au/today/95-year-old-great-grandmother-loses-more-than-1-million-life-savings-to-scammers/f41540e7-f5c9-4c3b-89a7-ac94dd81bf6a" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Today</em></a>.</p> <p>"George" then convinced Harriet the money from the sale of the house could build interest in an ING account, but it was actually being held by Westpac Bank.</p> <p>"It sounds implausible now, but the scammer had me convinced and I told my mother's bank, Teachers Mutual Bank, that this was an ING fixed term deposit, but it was being put in the Westpac bank," she said.</p> <p>"I put down the BSB number and the account number and what I thought was my name attached to the account, (my mother's bank) pointed out that it seems strange and ING account would be held with Westpac, but they still went ahead and authorised the transfer."</p> <p>When Harriet realised the scammers had taken hold of her life savings totalling $1.6 million, she felt "sick". </p> <p>"Obviously my world just fell out from under me - I just felt sick," she said.</p> <p>"I felt utterly responsible, I felt duped, foolish, ashamed - a lot of shame associated with it and I think that's why a lot of people don't come forward and talk about this kind of thing."</p> <p>Harriet has shared her story as a warning for others to be wary of potential scammers, while also calling on banks to have better protocols in place to stop suspicious transactions from going through. </p> <p>"Someone with basic training from the bank would have known that ING don't bank with any other banks and they should have flagged it," she said.</p> <p>"I believe the reality is that the banks 100 per cent put the blame on the victims and they minimise their own liability."</p> <p>"There should be some sort of system for compensating victims, the banks don't commit the theft, but they certainly drive the getaway car and they need to be held responsible for being complicit with this."</p> <p><em>Image credits: Today </em></p>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

Police fatally shoot armed 16-year-old after Bunnings carpark stabbing

<p>A 16-year-old boy has been shot dead by police after he stabbed a man in the carpark of a Bunnings Warehouse on Saturday night. </p> <p>WA Police were called to the hardware store in south Perth, which was closed at the time of the incident, after they received a call from the teen saying he was going to commit acts of violence. </p> <p>A second emergency call was then made a short time later after the teenager stabbed a man in the carpark, in what appears to be a random attack. </p> <p>Police Commissioner Col Blanch said when they arrived on the scene, they found a 16-year-old armed with a large kitchen knife.</p> <p>Commissioner Blanch said the boy lunged at officers with the knife and was shot, and died a short time later in hospital.</p> <p>The man who was stabbed, who is in his 30s, is recovering in hospital and is believed to be in a serious but stable condition.</p> <p>The police commissioner and WA Premier Roger Cook held a press conference on Sunday morning and described the incident as "extremely confronting".</p> <p>They said the boy was "running around a car park, armed with a knife" when police arrived. </p> <p>"They [WA police] exited their vehicle and were confronted with a male alone with a large kitchen knife," Commissioner Blanch said.</p> <p>"Two officers drew their tasers and one of the officers drew his firearm. They challenged the male to put down the knife, which he did not."</p> <p>Mr Cook said there were indications the boy had been radicalised online, saying at the press conference, "I want to reassure the community at this stage it appears that he acted solely and alone."</p> <p>"Members of the WA Muslim community, who were concerned by his behaviour, contacted police prior to the incident and I thank them for their help."</p> <p>It was also said the boy's family was cooperating with police.</p> <p>Commissioner Blanch said the incident was not being labelled as a terrorist attack at this stage.</p> <p>"It certainly has the hallmarks of one [but] the reason why I would declare it as a terrorist act going forward — it's about timing," Commissioner Blanch said.</p> <p>"That's something that we can work towards as we find out more information from the motivations behind this."</p> <p><em>Image credits: ABC / Shutterstock</em></p>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

“Such a cowardly thing”: Police hunt after e-scooter hit-and-run on 81-year-old woman

<p>Victoria Police have released an image of a man wanted in connection to an alleged attack on at 81-year-old outside the Melbourne Cricket Ground after an AFL game last Friday. </p> <p>Jessie Hatch, 81, was walking towards Jolimont Railway Station around 11pm when she was confronted by a man on an e-scooter, who told her to “move off the footpath”.</p> <p>Hatch then "explained that the footpath is not for vehicles and walked around him”, prompting the man to ride off, but he quickly turned around before allegedly hitting her from behind, causing her to fall to the ground and lose consciousness.</p> <p>According to Victoria Police, the rider allegedly did not stop to assist Hatch, and was unsuccessfully chased by a passerby.</p> <p>He was last seen heading west from the Swan Street Bridge.</p> <p>“She walked between 7-10m away and this guy’s doubled back and then smashed her from behind,” Jessie's son Ken told <a href="https://7news.com.au/news/mans-words-to-elderly-collingwood-fan-jessie-hatch-before-allegedly-hitting-her-with-e-scooter-in-mcg-hit-and-run-c-14571902" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>7News</em></a>.</p> <p>“Apparently she stopped breathing for 20 seconds or so, that’s what we heard.”</p> <p>Jessie is still in hospital recovering with five stitches in her hand and undergoing more tests on her spine to see if there is permanent damage.</p> <p>“Such a cowardly thing, I don’t know what would have gone into his head to do that,” Jessie told <em>7News</em> from her hospital bed.</p> <p>“Why would somebody do that? He should be ashamed of himself.”</p> <p>Police are investigating the incident, with Ken calling on the alleged perpetrator to come forward.</p> <p>“You made a mistake, you did something wrong, come forward,” he added.</p> <p>The man allegedly involved in the incident was of average height and had fair skin and a stocky build, with straight blonde/brown hair and grey/blue eyes.</p> <div> </div> <p>He was wearing thick-lensed glasses and a red jacket made of a shiny, waterproof material.</p> <p>Jessie’s story quickly gained attention around the AFL world, and Collingwood legend Peter Daicos was among those to offer his support.</p> <p>“I wanted to reach out, I heard about the incident after the game,” he said.</p> <p>“I hope you’re feeling better and I’m really looking forward to hearing that you’re back at the Collingwood games.</p> <p>“All the best from not just myself, but the boys and importantly the Collingwood Football Club. All our love, get well soon.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: 7News</em></p> <div class="hide-print ad-no-notice css-qyun7f-StyledAdUnitWrapper ezkyf1c0" style="box-sizing: border-box; caret-color: #292a33; color: #292a33; font-family: HeyWow, Montserrat, 'Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 15px;"> </div>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

Nine-year-old Aussie ballet prodigy scores full New York scholarship

<p>A talented nine-year-old is heading to New York City, after scoring a full scholarship to a prestigious ballet school. </p> <p>Malcolm Doyle's dad Nick said he and his wife knew their son had a talent for dance from a young age, and could not be more proud of the international attention his dancing has garnered.</p> <p>"He's been doing really well here in Australia and since last year, there's been a bit of a focus from overseas," Nick told <em><a href="https://9now.nine.com.au/today/aussie-billy-elliot-nine-year-old-ballet-prodigy-scores-scholarship-to-prestigious-new-york-academy/4e3fdf08-3fb7-41a4-89df-eb6ee4b58095" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Today</a></em>.</p> <p>"He got brought in to do an audition for Chicago's A and A Ballet, who were doing a world broadcast for auditions and from there, we just started to get a bit of interest."</p> <p>"And then this year, we let him do the auditions for the Royal Ballet and he ended up in Hong Kong over Easter."</p> <p>From there, Nick said the American Ballet Theatre in New York got in contact and offered Malcolm a scholarship. </p> <p>Malcolm ultimately turned down the offer and signed with another NYC school, the Ellison Theatre, who offered the youngster a full ride. </p> <p>The family are currently saving up to buy flights over to the US to check out the school, with Nick saying they will do anything and everything to support their son's dream. </p> <p>"It's taking quite a bit of the funds out of my bank account, but the love he's got for dancing, you can't stop him and even if we wanted to, I mean we get home after he's had a full day of dance and he's still dancing around the house," Nick said.</p> <p>Malcolm's dad has a performing arts background and his mum is also a classically trained ballerina and teacher, so Nick said Malcolm was either going to inherit the genes or "end up having three left feet".</p> <p>"He went and saw a production by the Queensland Ballet on the weekend, which he had never seen before and he walked out with half the choreography memorised in his head and trying to reproduce it.," Nick said.</p> <p>After being dubbed "Australia's own Billy Elliot", the Today hosts asked Malcom what it is he loves so much about dancing.</p> <p>"It makes me feel really excited and it's so amazing for me, the feeling I get when I dance," Malcolm said.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Today  </em></p>

Music

Placeholder Content Image

"An absolute hero": 10-year-old boy rescues drowning swimmer

<p>Miles Babcock has been made an honorary member of Careflight after saving a woman who was drowning in Sydney Harbour. </p> <p>Miles, who is just 10 years old, was paddle boarding with his dad Graham when they spotted the woman who was struggling in the water. </p> <p>The 10-year-old remained calm and collected after spotting the woman in distress, and began directing his dad over to help the woman out of the water. </p> <p>Graham could not contain his pride for his son, telling <em>Today</em> that he did everything in his power to rush to her aid.</p> <p>"I'm just incredibly proud, it's one of those confronting situations where you never really know how you're going to react," Graham said.</p> <p>"But Miles was the one who spotted the lady in distress, he kept the board steady and told me to get in the water and go and get her, he helped get her onto the board, helped turn her onto the side and helped pat her on the back to help clear her airways."</p> <p>"And then as soon as I asked him to jump off the board because we needed to get into shore as quickly as possible, he just did exactly that." </p> <p>Another nearby paddleboarder helped get the lady onto Miles and Graham's board, while Miles stayed behind to catch a ride back to shore with another boarder.</p> <p>"He was a real, real trooper and an absolute hero on the day," Graham said.</p> <p>"And then all the people who came in and helped were just fantastic, it was one of those things where everyone came together."</p> <p>People on the shore had already called triple zero and the Careflight team worked with lifeguards and paramedics to help get the woman to hospital where she is recovering.</p> <p>In the days after the rescue, Miles was called into the Careflight base to meet with the crew who helped the drowning woman, as they made him an an honorary Air Crew Officer and praised his "heroic rescue".</p> <p><iframe style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?height=314&amp;href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FMyCareFlight%2Fvideos%2F416634217746897%2F&amp;show_text=false&amp;width=560&amp;t=0" width="560" height="314" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p><em>Image credits: Today </em></p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Old woman targeted and accused of shoplifting

<p>The photo of an elderly woman has sparked widespread outrage, as the older woman was targeted by police officers who accused her of shoplifting. </p> <p>A bystander snapped a photo of an old lady standing outside a Coles supermarket, as she was set upon by two police officer who began sifting through her shopping to check if she had stolen anything. </p> <p>Posting the photo to X, the bystander explained how the situation unfolded. </p> <p>"I just saw this poor old lady get arrested by police for shoplifting food," the post read. </p> <p>"I told them that I'll pay for her food and let her go and then I got threatened with being arrested for obstructing police. Boycott Coles and Woolworths."</p> <p>The pictures show the woman talking with police in the Melbourne CBD as a number of items from her shopping are placed on the ground.</p> <p>Commenters online quickly jumped to fury over the situation, defending the woman and calling for empathy for older people who are struggling financially.</p> <p>"This is so messed up. If people are forced to steal food, we need a better alternative," one said.</p> <p>"The elderly do not have enough to live on, pension rises are not covering food and  utility price rises and the government couldn't care less," another said.</p> <p>"In my neck of the woods, I see some elderly folk snacking on grapes in supermarkets. They are left alone to do so by staff," a third added.</p> <p>"Seems like some training in empathy and kindness is needed," added a fourth. </p> <p><em>Image credits: X (Twitter)</em></p>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

94-year-old grandma takes on huge travel challenge

<p>"Grandma Joy" Ryan was 91 when she first got her passport, and she hasn't stopped travelling since. </p> <p>Now aged 94, she is embarking on a new global challenge with her grandson Brad Ryan, 42, with the intergenerational duo planning to travel to all seven continents in the world together. </p> <p>"I don't have many years left, [so] you hop to it," Grandma Joy told <em>CNN Travel</em>. </p> <p> "If you slow down, you don't get anything done."</p> <p>The pair, who are from the US, have already travelled to three continents, visiting Banff National Park in Canada last year to "represent North America well beyond just our own country", and Africa in 2023, visiting both Amboseli National Park and Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya. </p> <p>Their most recent trip was to South America, where they travelled to Ecuador, and spent time in  the Galapagos Islands, as well as Chile. </p> <p>"It was amazing to see those huge tortoises," Grandma Joy recalled. "They could raise their shells up just like a convertible or something."</p> <p>Prior to travelling the world together, the grandma-grandson duo were actually estranged for around a decade due to a family rift that occurred after Ryan's parents divorced. </p> <p>After reconnecting in 2010, Ryan was telling his grandma about his previous hiking adventures on the Appalachian Trail and Mount Kilimanjaro, when he learnt that his grandmother "had never set eyes on a mountain."</p> <p>"That was one of her lifelong regrets," he said. </p> <p>"Her travel had been limited to just a few road trips to Florida with my grandfather when he was alive.</p> <p>"Her view of the world was always what she saw on the Travel Channel or just on the news."</p> <p>That conversation stuck with him and the pair embarked on their first journey together in 2015, when Ryan decided to take a weekend road trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. </p> <p>"At 85, she saw her first mountain, climbed her first mountain and went camping for the first time and fell off the air mattress a couple of times and didn't complain," he said. </p> <p>He added, that having to move more slowly as he was travelling with his grandma, meant that he was able to appreciate everything in a more meaningful way. </p> <p>"I wasn't rushing through the places that I was visiting. I was really taking the time to appreciate smaller details.</p> <p>"The lens through which she is seeing the world is very different to most people my age. She doesn't visit a place thinking, 'Well, I'll be back again,' so there's more presence."</p> <p>They kept the adventure going and decided to travel to the 62 other US National Parks, and while it took them almost eight years with two-month long breaks between each trip, Grandma Joy made history last year. </p> <p>She became the oldest person to visit all 63 National Parks in the US. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CsU_w4-rqyP/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CsU_w4-rqyP/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Grandma Joy’s Road Trip — Brad and Joy Ryan (@grandmajoysroadtrip)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>"Being an old person sitting on the porch, this makes you feel like, 'Well maybe I did accomplish something.' So I enjoyed every bit of it," she said. </p> <p>Ryan himself is very proud of his grandmother's achievement, and after going viral with their national parks quest in 2023, he said that travelling with her has been a life-changing experience. </p> <p>"She shattered my preconceived notions about what it means to be an older person,"  he said. </p> <p>"Because she wasn't just sitting in the passenger seat looking out the window, although we did that too."</p> <p>He then described how Grandma Joy went ziplining at New River Gorge National Park and Preserve in West Virginia and whitewater rafting at Wrangell St. Elias National Park in Alaska at the age of 91, and how she reminded him of all the possibilities that come with getting older. </p> <p>"I think we all have this sort of innate dread about getting older," he said. </p> <p>"And we think about the limitations instead of the possibilities. She [Grandma Joy] reminds us of the possibilities that still exist."</p> <p>While the pair are currently "still recovering" from their latest trip to South America, they shared their plan to visit Australia later this year, and hope to  "hop over to Asia" after. </p> <p>Once they've ticked off Australia and Asia off their list, they plan to visit Europe and hope to end their trip in Antarctica. </p> <p>"Antarctica is the one that's like the wildcard," Ryan said. "We would love that, but getting there is challenging.</p> <p>"I'd like to end big, and I think Antarctica would be the cherry on top of this adventure."</p> <p>The duo document all their adventures on their Instagram account, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/grandmajoysroadtrip/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">grandmajoysroadtrip</a> and despite people wondering when they would wrap it up, Grandma Joy's "willing spirit" keeps her going. </p> <p>"I just take one step at a time, one day at a time, and thank the Lord every morning for giving me one more day," she said. </p> <p>"I try to be an optimist. The glass is half full, not half empty. And the people that you meet along the way lift your spirits.</p> <p>"You see people in worse shape than you, and I just think 'I've got a lot to be thankful for.'</p> <p>"Not everybody's lucky enough to have a grandson that's willing to drag them around."</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p> <p> </p>

International Travel

Placeholder Content Image

Heroic great-grandma saves two-year-old from collapsed ceiling

<p>In a heart-stopping moment of bravery and maternal instinct, 88-year-old Nicky Panagiotidis shielded her great-grandson, two-year-old Harvey, from a collapsing ceiling in their Melbourne home.</p> <p>The incident occurred at Panagiotidis' residence in Ascot Vale, where she was caring for Harvey late in the afternoon.</p> <p>According to Harvey's mother, Nicole Brown, the terrifying ordeal unfolded suddenly. As the ceiling began to crack, Panagiotidis swiftly reacted, rolling over off the couch to cover young Harvey with her own body. Brown, overwhelmed with gratitude and admiration for her grandmother's quick thinking, remarked, "I just know that motherly instinct that she has went through her to be a hero - she is actually a hero for him," <a href="https://www.9news.com.au/national/ascot-vale-great-grandmother-saves-grandson-from-ceiling-collapse/9f2bd38f-5254-4f53-981b-e3fb4b9c1bd9" target="_blank" rel="noopener">she told 9News</a>.</p> <p>In a moment of urgency, Panagiotidis managed to contact her daughter, Julie Polimos, informing her of the dire situation: "The ceiling is on top of me and we can't move." Emergency services promptly arrived at the scene, discovering the pair with thankfully minimal injuries.</p> <p>Despite the trauma of the event, Panagiotidis displayed remarkable resilience. Despite suffering bruising on her back and shoulders, she managed to walk to the ambulance and was later discharged from the hospital.</p> <p>Speaking of her mother's strength, Polimos highlighted Panagiotidis' dedication to traditional values, noting her commitment to home-cooked Greek Mediterranean meals over takeaways. "She doesn't buy takeaways, she always cooks home meals... Greek Mediterranean meals," Polimos proudly stated.</p> <p>The family attributes the ceiling collapse to a water leak, which they had noticed a week prior, observing cracks and sagging in the structure. However, amidst the unfortunate circumstances, they are immensely grateful for the fortunate outcome and the selfless actions of Panagiotidis, which will undoubtedly be remembered as a testament to the extraordinary love shared within the family.</p> <p><em>Images: 9News</em></p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Firefighter praised for sweet interaction with three-year-old

<p>A cooking mishap for one Aussie family ended with a heartwarming moment shared between a firefighter and a young girl meeting her hero for the first time. </p> <p>Firefighters were called to a home at Blue Haven on the NSW Central Coast on Saturday, after a fire broke out on a kitchen stove top and spread to the range hood. </p> <p>They were quick to put out the blaze and just as they were about to leave, three-year-old Mia was too excited to meet her heroes that she couldn't let them leave just yet. </p> <p>"Once we got there and ascertained that there was no fire spread to the roof and other areas... their daughter decided to take me away into the room to see the new books she got," Doyalson Fire and Rescue Station Manager Dirk Ziekenheiner told Yahoo News.  </p> <p>"Which I then obviously took the opportunity to read," he added.</p> <p>A picture of the sweet moment was shared on social media, with the firefighter sat on one of Mia's pink chairs and the three-year-old keenly listening to him read the story. </p> <p>Mia also impressed the firefighter with her own safety knowledge, as she shared her understanding of calling Triple-Zero in an emergency, how to escape a fire and the importance staying outside after evacuating. </p> <p>"Obviously her parents did really well and schools pass on the message, and you know that safety messages are key to surviving a house fire, especially these days," Ziekenheiner said.</p> <p>"If you don't know what to do, and you never plan for it, then you're probably behind the eight ball... this girl was amazing, she knew all those key messages which is really important."</p> <p>Aussies praised the firefighter in the comments of the post, with many of them commenting on how "cute" the moment was. </p> <p>Mia's father, James, also added that his daughter was very excited to meet her heroes despite the circumstances. </p> <p>"Mia watches a lot of children's TV shows which feature firefighters so she already knows they're heroes and they rescue people," James said.</p> <p>"Having now seen first-hand the great work they do, we'll continue to spread the word about fire safety and we encourage others to do the same.</p> <p>"Our family never thought we'd come this close to losing our home to fire, so the key is to not be complacent about the risks."</p> <p><em>Image: Fire and Rescue NSW / Facebook</em></p> <p> </p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

How 8-year-old Ruby McLellan became Australia's youngest home owner

<p>Move over, monopoly tycoons and pretend princes of pretend kingdoms – meet Ruby McLellan, the pint-sized powerhouse who's rewriting the rules of real estate and giving the term "property ladder" a literal twist.</p> <p>That's right: Ruby is just eight years old and already owns a four-bedroom house. Meanwhile, most of us can barely find matching socks in the morning.</p> <p>Now, before you start picturing a tiny landlord with a playhouse adorned with "No Girls Allowed" signs, let's delve into Ruby's remarkable tale of fiscal responsibility and pocket money prowess.</p> <p>While most kids her age were still trying to figure out if they preferred chocolate or strawberry milk, Ruby was busy checking out property market trends and crunching numbers like a seasoned Wall Street mogul. With the help of her siblings, Angus (14) and Lucy (13), Ruby pooled their collective pocket money - a grand total of $6000 - to secure a deposit for their first property. Their weapon of choice? Not lemonade stands or tooth fairy funds, but good old-fashioned hard work and frugality. The result? A four-bedroom home in Clyde, southeast of Melbourne, bought by the McLellan kids for $671,000.</p> <p>Their dad, Cam McLellan, CEO of a property investment company, guided them through the labyrinth of real estate jargon, teaching them about positive gearing and growth corridors. While other kids were learning their times tables, Ruby was calculating potential rental yields. Talk about a head start in life!</p> <p><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">And while their friends were blowing their allowances on the latest toys and gadgets, these pint-sized property moguls were saying no to impulse buys and yes to long-term investments. It's like they were born with calculators instead of rattles.</span></p> <p>Now, you might be wondering, what's next for these mini-magnates? Well, they plan to hold onto their property until Lucy and Angus hit their early 20s, ensuring they've waited through one full "growth property cycle". After that, it's off to the races, with hopes that their humble abode will fetch a cool million bucks.</p> <p>But Ruby's not stopping there. She's already asking about tax implications and property sales, proving that she's got the brains to match her business acumen. Who needs a lemonade stand when you can have a diversified investment portfolio?</p> <p>So, while most kids are busy mastering Fortnite dances or perfecting their TikTok routines, Ruby McLellan is out here making moves in the property market. Who knows? Maybe one day we'll all be renting from her property empire.</p> <p>But just remember, when you're paying rent to an eight-year-old landlord, be sure to pay on time. Late fees might include extra homework assignments or a mandatory bedtime story session. Hey, it's all in the lease agreement...</p> <p><em>Image: The Today Show</em></p>

Money & Banking

Placeholder Content Image

Influencer's tragic update following son's death at six weeks old

<p>Aussie Influencer Veruca Salt has shared an emotional tribute to her son who <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/influencer-announces-tragic-death-of-six-week-old-son" target="_blank" rel="noopener">died in his sleep</a> at just six-weeks-old. </p> <p>The 25-year-old, real name Kimberley Summer Hartley, shared a video of the funeral service for her son Cash, with Taylor Swift’s rock ballad <em>Long Live </em>playing in the background.</p> <p>At one moment, Hartley can be seen being consoled by her friends, as black and white balloons were released into the air. </p> <p>The board at the service showed a picture of Cash with the words "A celebration of life", followed by the baby boy's full name, the date he was born and passed away, and “forever dancing with the fruits”. </p> <p>The video ends with a black and white video of Cash being comforted by his mum and smiling as she stroked his cheek. </p> <p> </p> <div class="embed" style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; outline: none !important;"><iframe class="embedly-embed" style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; outline: none !important; width: 573px; max-width: 100%;" title="tiktok embed" src="https://cdn.embedly.com/widgets/media.html?src=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2Fembed%2Fv2%2F7337251408909028609&display_name=tiktok&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2F%40verucasalt444%2Fvideo%2F7337251408909028609&image=https%3A%2F%2Fp16-sign-sg.tiktokcdn.com%2Fobj%2Ftos-alisg-p-0037%2F3377edfbc6c44ee3a82e4a4c625f5884_1708336979%3Fx-expires%3D1708552800%26x-signature%3DffE%252BCUSJ9VgzUsT3qdjowDvQ2d8%253D&key=59e3ae3acaa649a5a98672932445e203&type=text%2Fhtml&schema=tiktok" width="340" height="700" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></div> <p>Fans took to the comments to share their condolences for the grieving mum. </p> <p>“Oh Veruca, if I could take even minutes off my life to give you more time with him I would in a heartbeat,”  one wrote. </p> <p>“Rest in paradise with the dancing fruits, beautiful boy,” said another.</p> <p>"Rest In Paradise Baby Cash. Please visit your Mommy in her dreams and keep her safe always. Sending love Veruca," commented a third. </p> <p>"I’m so sorry! What a beautiful send off for a gorgeous boy," added a fourth.</p> <p><em>Images: TikTok</em></p> <p> </p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Influencer announces tragic death of six-week-old son

<p>TikTok influencer Veruca Salt, real name Kimberley Summer Hartley, took to Instagram to announce the tragic death of her six-week-old son, Cash. </p> <p>The Gold Coast - based influencer, 25, shared the tragic news just one day after she posted a TikTok of her taking her newborn bub out for his first hospital visit, as he hadn't pooped in seven days. </p> <p>On Monday morning she revealed that her son “died in his sleep”. </p> <p>“It is with a heavy heart that I’m writing this,” she wrote.</p> <p>“My baby died in his sleep on Monday morning. I don’t know what happened, he is having an autopsy this week but it is unlikely that I’ll ever have an answer.</p> <p>“I’m just saying this because people are still commenting on my TikToks saying how happy I look with him and ‘just wait for the toddler stage’ and stuff and I (really) can’t take it anymore. I’m really sorry.”</p> <p>In her most recent <a href="https://www.tiktok.com/@verucasalt444/video/7332609198599032065?is_from_webapp=1&sender_device=pc&web_id=7142332295764346370" target="_blank" rel="noopener">TikTok</a>, she shared a clip of her grieving her son's death with the caption: "I knew he was dead but there was a part of me that really thought they were gonna wake him up." </p> <p>Fans have shared their condolences. </p> <p>"We are all standing by you Veruca. Take all the time you need ❤️" one wrote on TikTok. </p> <p>"I’ve never cried harder for a woman i don’t know, I'm so sorry Veruca the love you have for him never goes unnoticed," another commented. </p> <p>"Sending love this is the worst thing in the world to happen to anyone," a third added. </p> <p>"I'm so so sorry no mother should have to go through this💔" a fourth wrote. </p> <p>Queensland Police have confirmed the death, after they were called to a Southport unit at around 6.13am on February 5.</p> <p>The death is not being treated as suspicious.</p> <p>Police are currently awaiting autopsy results, Superintendent Craig Hanlon told the <em>Gold Coast Bulletin</em>. </p> <p>“It’s obviously a tragic situation and our hearts go out to the mother and the family.”</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram/ TikTok</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

"Pathetic" fine for killer of beloved 40-year-old blue groper

<p>In a shocking act of disregard for both marine life and the law, a 26-year-old individual has plunged a spear into the heart of Sydney's Cronulla community by illegally spearing and killing the beloved blue groper known as Gus.</p> <p>Blue gropers, revered for their non-aggressive nature and inquisitive demeanour, have been the official fish of New South Wales since 1996, enjoying legal protection against spearfishing and commercial exploitation.</p> <p>After visiting and entertaining locals in the area for over 40 years, Gus, affectionately named by the community, met a tragic end at Old Park in Cronulla, a well-signed no-spearfishing zone. The incident has left the local community seething with anger and grief, prompting demands for harsher penalties and increased community education.</p> <p>A local Facebook post on the incident quickly garnered more than 100 comments and 500 reactions, reflecting the collective outrage of concerned locals. One individual expressed their frustration, saying, "Omg what an a**hole! I've been trying to find that groper for ages, and now I'll never get to see him. I hope this guy gets a massive fine."</p> <p>Witnesses to the distressing incident, including Tenielle Piek, reported the callousness of the spearfisherman to <a href="https://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/outrage-over-fishermans-pathetic-punishment-for-killing-iconic-blue-groper-in-cronulla/news-story/7dec503e9b95ec1fd8d7e7b0f8438036" target="_blank" rel="noopener">news.com.au</a>, who proudly displayed the lifeless groper. Piek lamented the loss of the "Labrador of the Sea" and the vulnerability of these tame and curious creatures to spearfishing. She fears that future generations may be deprived of the opportunity to experience these beautiful creatures in their natural habitat along the shores of Cronulla.</p> <p>Despite the gravity of the crime, the spearfisherman was initially handed a meagre fine of $500, sparking outrage among locals who believed the punishment to be woefully inadequate. NSW Fisheries then tacked on an additional $300, and while the culprit displayed remorse during the interview with fisheries officers and was a first-time offender, the community clearly still feels shortchanged by the leniency of the penalty.</p> <p>A spokesperson from the Department of Primary Industries claimed that the individual was provided with education and awareness material to understand the rules of spearfishing. However, the paltry $300 fine out of a potential $11,000 seems insufficient to deter future acts of this nature.</p> <p>As the investigation appears to conclude, the Cronulla community remains on edge, grappling with the inadequacy of the penalties issued. The tragic fate of Gus demands justice and a resolute commitment to preserving the delicate marine ecosystem. Anything less than a substantial deterrent risks further harm to these innocent creatures and the cherished natural beauty of Cronulla's shores.</p> <p><em>Images: Facebook</em></p>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

90-year-old grandma's secrets, regrets and brutal "advice"

<p>An amazingly sprightly 90-year-old grandmother has appeared on TikTok to share her deepest regrets in life, leaving viewers both amused and contemplative with her surprising take on being a nonagenarian.</p> <p>The video, which has garnered a whopping 70,000 views, features the wise words of wisdom from a woman who has seen it all, or at least enough to make her wish she hadn't seen quite so much.</p> <p>The nanna, who spilled the beans to her inquisitive granddaughter <a href="https://www.tiktok.com/@racheljdillon?lang=en" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Rachel Dillon</a> – an online fitness coach –  began by revealing what she wishes she did less of in her life.</p> <p>"Probably less of nothing," she admits. "I mean I never worked after I was married or anything like that. I wish I had probably done more mixing with people with that. More socialising." </p> <p>It's then that the truth bombs really start to drop. When Rachel asks, "Do you have any regrets", a cloud of laughter fills the room, before the answer comes.</p> <p>"Yes, I do regret marrying too young," she says emphatically. "I met my husband when I was 13 and he was 15. We got married at 17 and 19. I met him at the library. He used to ride me up on the bicycle when I was going to the library."</p> <p>Then, when asked about the secret to turning 90, Rachel's grandma confesses not only that there isn't one, but that she regrets having made it this far at all.</p> <p>"I didn't really want to get to 90," she declares with the nonchalance of someone choosing between tea and coffee. "I've had enough. I've had all I wanted out of the world. I am quite happy to go and meet my little puppy dog waiting there for me."</p> <p><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">When asked about her secret to looking so young, Rachel's grandma almost brushes the question aside, laying the blame simply in the quality of her genes for having "always been a fox", according to Rachel.</span></p> <p>The final question, and the final brutally honest response – which may have made Rachel regret asking about regrets – was simply: "Do you have any advice for us?"</p> <p>"Oh God no," comes the world-weary answer. "Not the way the world's going. No, I'm just glad I'll be gone. I don't want to be part of anything that I can see going on."      </p> <p>TikTok users were quick to commend the grandmother, not just for her unexpected revelations but also for her timeless beauty. "She looks absolutely amazing," gushed one admirer, proving that age is just a number – albeit one that sometimes takes us by surprise.</p> <p>In the end, this nonagenarian nanna has become an unexpected sensation, leaving us all to ponder life's mysteries, library love stories, and the prospect of meeting puppy dogs in the great beyond.</p> <p>If her story has taught us anything, it's that life is unpredictable, love can blossom in the unlikeliest of places (like a library), and sometimes it's OK to regret that hasty decision to say "I do" before you even knew how to do your taxes.</p> <div class="post_body_wrapper" style="font-size: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 8px 0px 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; caret-color: #323338; color: #323338; font-family: Figtree, Roboto, 'Noto Sans Hebrew', 'Noto Kufi Arabic', 'Noto Sans JP', sans-serif;"> <div class="post-body-container" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline;"> <div class="post-body-renderer-component post_body" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: top; position: relative; transition: max-height 0.14s ease 0s; overflow: hidden; color: var(--primary-text-color); max-height: none;"> <div class="post-body-content" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; width: 630px; overflow: auto hidden;"> <div class="body_text redactor-styles redactor-in" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px 15px 15px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; position: relative; overflow: auto; color: var(--primary-text-color); font-family: var(--font-family); line-height: 1.5; word-break: break-word;"> <div class="embed" style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; outline: none !important;"><iframe class="embedly-embed" style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; width: 600px; max-width: 100%; outline: none !important;" title="tiktok embed" src="https://cdn.embedly.com/widgets/media.html?src=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2Fembed%2Fv2%2F7311465610821651720&display_name=tiktok&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tiktok.com%2F%40racheljdillon%2Fvideo%2F7311465610821651720&image=https%3A%2F%2Fp16-sign-sg.tiktokcdn.com%2Fobj%2Ftos-alisg-p-0037%2Fo49EYZFdsEDJhfBAiE2gfGE8l3IAR2qBQx14iB%3Fx-expires%3D1702681200%26x-signature%3DL%252FvO6dLXwqFOi09XENAbVmG4tgs%253D&key=5b465a7e134d4f09b4e6901220de11f0&type=text%2Fhtml&schema=tiktok" width="340" height="700" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div> <div> <div> <div> <div><em>Images: TikTok / @racheljdillon</em></div> </div> </div> </div> </div>

Retirement Life

Placeholder Content Image

Tiny chihuahua saves 90-year-old woman with heroic act

<p>In the world of unlikely heroes, step aside Batman, move over Superman, because Minnie the Chihuahua cross is here to steal the spotlight.</p> <p>This petite pooch from Kingston, in the South Australia's southeast, has recently been showered with praise for her unexpected, life-saving antics.</p> <p>Picture this: Minnie, a little dog with a heart as big as her bark, not particularly keen on hugs, found herself in a situation that required more than just a wag of her tail.</p> <p>On that fateful Friday, December 1, Minnie noticed that her 90-year-old owner, Joyce Gibbs, was in a bit of a pickle – struggling to catch a breath. Now, most dogs might just tilt their heads in confusion (you can picture it) or fetch a chew toy, but not Minnie.</p> <p>Untrained in any form of medical assistance, Minnie decided to take matters into her own paws. Whether by sheer luck or by innate instinct, the canine prodigy leaped onto Joyce’s lap and – brace yourselves –  <em>pressed the medical alert device hanging around her neck</em>. Yes, you heard that right; she hit the SOS button, sending out a message that would make any emergency service scramble into action.</p> <p>Lyn Gibbs, Joyce’s daughter, expressed her astonishment, “Minnie never jumps up in that chair when mum is in it..." she <a href="https://7news.com.au/news/chihuahua-praised-for-saving-90-year-old-south-australian-owner-struggling-to-breathe-c-12821344" target="_blank" rel="noopener">told 7News</a>. "Minnie knew she needed help, so she jumped up, trying to help her.”</p> <p>A stroke of genius? An incredibly lucky accident? Either way, Minnie became the the hero of the moment, saving the day like a furry little Avenger.</p> <p>As Joyce found herself in the hospital grappling with Rhinovirus, Minnie continued to be her unwavering companion. Doctors predicted a three-week recovery period, but after only four days, Joyce was back home, thanks to the vigilant care of her four-legged saviour.</p> <p>Lyn couldn’t help but gush about Minnie’s dedication, “Minnie’s been so good from the day I got her... she’s the best dog... she doesn’t leave her side.” Move over Florence Nightingale; we’ve got Minnie, the dedicated dog nurse, taking care of business.</p> <p>This heartwarming tale isn’t just about Minnie’s heroics; it’s a reminder of the importance of those pesky but life-saving medical alert devices. As Lyn says: “The medical alert is just so important for old people... a lot of them won’t wear them. They put them on the cupboard or on the table, but you really need them at all times, especially in the shower.”</p> <p>So, take heed: wear your devices and maybe, just maybe, you'll have a four-legged hero by your side, ready to leap into action when you least expect it.</p> <p>In a world where a Chihuahua can be the difference between a close call and catastrophe, we salute you, Minnie, for proving that heroes come in all shapes and sizes.</p> <p><em>Images: 7News</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

"I just don't like old skin": Jane Fonda's bizarre confession

<p>Jane Fonda has made an unusual confession about her dating life, explaining why she would only date people of a certain age. </p> <p>The Hollywood legend, 85, has been married three times throughout her life: first to director Roger Vadim from 1965 to 1973, then to activist Tom Hayden from 1973 to 1990, and finally to CNN founder Ted Turner from 1991 to 2001.</p> <p>Fonda is currently single, but doesn't plan on staying that way. </p> <p>Despite being open to finding love, the actress has a very specific criteria for potential suitors to meet before agreeing to a date. </p> <p>On the <em>Absolutely Not</em> podcast, the Oscar winner initially suggested she was done with men for good, saying, “I’m done, I’m over, I’m [almost] 86 years old, even in the dark I wouldn’t want to be naked in front of anybody.” </p> <p>But she then went on to confess that there’s still a chance she could fall for a man, but they would just have to be substantially younger. </p> <p>“And here’s another thing, I’m ashamed to say this, if I were to take a lover, he’d have to be 20. Because I don’t like old skin,” said Fonda.</p> <p>She continued, “And consequently, I don’t want to foist that on anybody else. I assume other people are like me, I just don’t like old skin.”</p> <p>“I disapprove of 86-year-old men with 20-year-old women, so I’m not going to repeat it. I can ogle them, and I can’t pretend that I don’t get turned on if I see a certain kind of a person, but no, no, no, I don’t want to force that on anybody.”</p> <p>Her confession has been criticised on social media, with some suggesting the star would be “cancelled” if it was a man that had said the same about young women. </p> <p>“This is seriously weird,” tweeted one fan, while another said: “But an 85 year old man wanting to date a 20 year old woman is disgusting? Am I right?”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

Relationships

Placeholder Content Image

Nine-year-old Hamas hostage believed dead is reunited with her father

<p>Dozens of hostages are recovering after being freed from their captors, after a temporary truce between Israel and Hamas came into effect. </p> <p>Almost eight weeks of violence came to a halt as the truce began, with Hamas so far releasing 41 hostages in the first two days of the truce. </p> <p>Among those who were freed by the radical Palestinian group was nine-year-old Emily Hand, who's father thought <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/death-was-a-blessing-why-father-was-glad-to-hear-his-daughter-was-killed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">she was dead</a>. </p> <p>When Emily was at a sleepover on October 7th, the neighbourhood was bombed and her father Thomas, was told his daughter had died. </p> <p>Now, Thomas and Emily have been reunited, with their emotional reunion just one of many as families across Israel saw the return of their loved ones. </p> <p>Also released by Hamas was four-year-old Abigail Edan, an American-Israeli dual citizen who was abducted by Hamas almost eight weeks ago. </p> <p>US President Joe Biden commented on Abigail's release, saying she has been through "the unthinkable", as the four-year-old saw her mother get killed, before her father was also killed as he tried to shield her from the bombings.</p> <p>Biden said Abigail is receiving love, care and “the supportive services she needs” and adding he hoped “this is not the end of the temporary truce”.</p> <p>“What she endured was unthinkable. She has been through a terrible trauma,” he said. </p> <p>All 41 hostages released by Hamas from captivity in Gaza are stable, according to local medical professionals.</p> <p>The <a href="https://www.aljazeera.com/features/2023/11/24/israel-hamas-truce-comes-into-effect-how-it-could-now-unfold" target="_blank" rel="noopener">truce</a> between Israel and Hamas came into effect on Friday morning, marking the end of seven weeks of constant fighting since the bombing of southern Israel on October 7th. </p> <p>The four-day pause is expected to see the exchange of 150 Palestinian women and children imprisoned in Israeli jails for 50 women and children hostages held by Hamas. </p> <p>Israeli officials, while adamant that the truce is not an end to the war, have also agreed to pause fighting for an additional day for every further 10 captives freed by Hamas.</p> <p><em>Image credits: CNN</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Heartwarming gesture for Qantas' oldest passenger

<p>A 103-year-old passenger has received an emotional welcome onboard her Qantas flight, with the pilot and cabin crew erupting into cheers as she stepped on board. </p> <p>Ngan Chun Kam aka ‘Mamma’, is believed to be the oldest passenger to ever travel with the Flying Kangaroo airline.</p> <p>Mamma was born on January 1st 1920, and Qantas was founded 10 months later in November 1920. </p> <p>After visiting family in Sydney for several weeks, Mamma was returning home to her native Hong Kong when Qantas staff on-board QF127 learned of her age.</p> <p>“It was such an honour to have Ms Kam on our flight to Hong Kong,” Jayson Eng, Qantas customer service agent who was on the November 3rd flight, told <a href="https://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-updates/travel-stories/qantas-crews-heartwarming-act-for-103yearold-passenger/news-story/75c4ccb9c1addc2884e7e3063422763b" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>news.com.au</em></a>.</p> <p>“We got her trip off to a flying start with a special welcome announcement from the Captain, which was broadcast throughout the entire aircraft.”</p> <p>Mr Eng said it resulted in a big cheer and a round of applause throughout the cabin.</p> <p>“Our cabin crew loved taking turns to introduce themselves to Ms Kam. We called her Po Po (grandma in Cantonese) as a sign of respect for her. She was such a delight to have on board.”</p> <p>Mamma, who has six children aged 72 to 83, 13 grandchildren and 15 great grandchildren, has been visiting Australia once a year since 1979 to visit her eldest son who lives in Sydney. </p> <p>According to Mamma’s daughter-in-law Helen, at first she had no idea why the cabin erupted in a loud cheer as she doesn’t speak English. </p> <p>It wasn’t until a friend who was also on the flight explained it was because she was the eldest passenger they’ve ever flown, and she began to smile. </p> <p>“Everyone was clapping and cheering and she just felt so special,” Helen told <em>news.com.au</em>.</p> <p>The airline also gifted Mamma, who was flying in business class, a goodie bag filled with champagne and merch.</p> <div> </div> <p>“When she got to Hong Kong, she called me saying John (friend on the flight with her) left his bag, thinking it was his,” Helen said.</p> <p>“I told her it’s what the airline gave her as a gift and she said ‘well I don’t drink champagne’ – I told her ‘well in that case bring it back with you to Australia on your next visit, we’ll have it’,” she laughed.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Courtesy of Qantas</em></p> <div class="media image" style="caret-color: #000000; color: #000000; font-style: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-weight: 400; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: auto; text-align: start; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: auto; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-size-adjust: auto; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration: none; box-sizing: inherit; margin-bottom: 24px; display: flex; flex-direction: column; align-items: center; width: 705.202209px; max-width: 100%;"> </div>

International Travel

Placeholder Content Image

“I hate him for what he did to my mummy”: Tragic statement from daughter of slain 23-year-old

<p>Queenslander Gabrielle "Gabbie" Marshall, 23, moved to Tasmania to build a new life and hoped to be reunited with her daughter in the future. </p> <p>Her killer, Colin William Drake, 37, lived on the same street just 230m away, and would later on stab her in a frenzied attack while she slept on the floor of her friend’s house in the coastal town of Ulverstone.</p> <p>Although Drake had no clear motive for the attack on June 14, 2021, he had been arrested and appeared in the Supreme Court of Tasmania on Wednesday after pleading guilty to murder.</p> <p>The Crown prosecutor Linda Mason SC, said that Gabbie suffered 17 stab wounds to her neck, arms and hands, in a desperate act to defend herself. </p> <p>In heartbreaking turn of events, Gabbie's parents Heidi and Rick Marshall paid tribute to their young daughter in court. </p> <p>“I saw two men approaching (our house) in suits. I knew they were detectives,”  Heidi recalled the moment she found out about her daughter's death. </p> <p>“I instantly knew something had happened to Gabrielle and my heart just broke.”</p> <p>Heidi said that Gabbie felt the safest in Tasmania, after getting out of a bad relationship and would call her parents every night to tell them she loved them. </p> <p>“Before her death she was the happiest she had ever been,” Gabbie's dad said. </p> <p>“Just like that she was gone,” Heidi said.</p> <p>“You never think anything like this would happen to your family.”</p> <p>Gabbie's daughter, who was six at the time, was playing on the deck when the detectives arrived and overheard the conversation. </p> <p>She "still sleeps with one of Gabbie’s jumpers,” Heidi said. </p> <p>Gabbie's daughter, who continues to live with her grandparents, has written a heart-wrenching statement which was also read in court. </p> <p>“When I hug my mummy’s jumper at night I get to talk to her,” the statement read. </p> <p>“(She) won’t be there to see me finish school. I hate him very much for what he did to my mummy.”</p> <p>The court was told that Drake, who is set to be sentenced in December, has a mild intellectual disability and a low IQ, sitting at the bottom 0.4 per cent of the population.</p> <p>The Crown prosecutor said that there were several possible motives including sexual jealousy, desire, or that he entered the house to steal something. </p> <p>She added that this is due to the sexualised comments he had made about women he saw while walking with his carer a few weeks prior. </p> <p>He had no connection with Gabbie or her friend. </p> <p>Defence lawyer Greg Barns SC said Drake had indicated to his legal advisers that he had remorse, and maintained that he went to the house to get cigarettes. </p> <p><em>Images: 7News</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Foul play suspected in tragic death of TV star's 15-year-old niece

<p dir="ltr">Police are investigating the death of TV star Audrina Patridge’s 15-year-old niece, after her cause of death was revealed to be a drug overdose. </p> <p dir="ltr">Young Sadie passed away in February just nine days after her 15th birthday.</p> <p dir="ltr">Police are still looking into the exact manner of how the teenager died, as they are investigating different avenues of how the drugs entered her system.</p> <p dir="ltr">Sources have been trying to figure out how the teenager got her hands on narcotics, adding that police have learned that she allegedly used Snapchat to procure Percocet that was laced with fentanyl.</p> <p dir="ltr">Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid drug, which can be up to 100x stronger than typical opioid drugs like morphine. </p> <p dir="ltr">Fentanyl, a very fast acting medication, is a prescription drug used during surgeries and prescribed for very severe pain, often in late-stage cancers.</p> <p dir="ltr">Despite being an effective pain reliever, Fentanyl is also manufactured illegally and may be sold as powder, fake pills or mixed in with other illicit drugs, like heroin, with this combination being especially deadly.</p> <p dir="ltr">Audrina, known for her role on <em>The Hills</em>, shared the heartbreaking news in February that her niece had passed away in a 10-slide Instagram tribute.</p> <p dir="ltr">“My heart hurts to even write this. My beautiful niece is now in heaven,” she captioned the slide show that looked back on cherished memories.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I know it’s not goodbye forever, but it is the hardest to say goodbye for now. We will miss you and cherish every single moment we had with you. Rest in peace Say Say!! We love you forever &amp; ever!”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Instagram</em></p>

Legal

Our Partners