7 May 2024

Fishing trip gives fitting nod to 12-month anniversary of Laura publican's tragic death

| Lyndon Keane
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Friends of former Peninsula Hotel publican Kev “Stumpy” Darmody mark the 12-month anniversary of his tragic death with a fishing trip at the Kennedy River site of the April 2023 crocodile attack. Photo: Facebook.

Friends of the late owner of Laura’s Peninsula Hotel have commemorated the 12-month anniversary of his passing in a way he would have approved of: by wetting a line and chasing barramundi.

Kev “Stumpy” Darmody was tragically attacked and killed by a crocodile while fishing along the Kennedy River in Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park in April 2023, and new pub owner Stuart Wiggins told Cape York Weekly it had been a low-key nod to his best mate’s memory.

“Mate, it was a good day and a sad day,” he said.

“It was sad to think what happened but, you know, he went the way doing what he loved doing, and that was fishing, but he was still too young.”

READ ALSO Legacy of beloved Laura publican ‘week or so’ from opening doors

Mr Wiggins said the group made the journey to the site of the attack to “say a few words to him” and inspect the makeshift memorial attached to a gum tree beside the river.

“One of my friends put it on last year, and we’re going to get another proper plaque there,” he said.

With the pub having now been reopened for several weeks, Mr Wiggins said he and staff had been warmed by the memories both locals and early dry season travellers had been sharing of Mr Darmody.

“There’s people who have been there before and who knew Kev, and they are stopping in and having a chat about him, which is good,” he reflected.

“His memory’s still carrying on.”

Stuart Wiggins poses for a photo with the makeshift tribute to his best mate and former Laura pub owner Kev “Stumpy” Darmody. Photo: Facebook.

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