Caravan business in mourning
Family watches as grandfather's birthday
skydive ends in tragedy
By DENNIS AMOR
STAFF at a NSW caravan business have paid tribute to their boss who
died while taking his first skydive ... a 70th birthday present from his
Adventurer and grandfather Terry Vowles, co-owner of R 'n' T
Specialised Caravan Repairs and Accessories at Tweed Heads, is thought to
have suffered a heart attack as he leapt out of the plane high over the
"We cannot describe how awful we felt when we heard the news," admin
worker Gae Preston told Caravanning News. "Terry was an absolutely
wonderful person ... a loving family man and wonderful colleague who loved
Members of his family watched from the beach as Mr Vowles took the tandem
jump, oblivious of the drama unfolding 10,000ft above them. Desperate
attempts to revive him on Kirra Beach proved fruitless.
Ironically, Mr Vowles had told listeners to a local breakfast radio
programme earlier that morning that he was looking forward to his skydive.
"I'm going to enjoy it," he said.
Tandem instructor Rob McMillan told media he knew something was wrong as
soon as their parachute opened.
"It looked like he had passed out, I tried to wake him up and hold his
head up," he said.
He told how he began CPR as soon as they landed on the beach. "The
ambulance turned up in a few minutes but unfortunately he passed away," he
Although part owner of the caravan business, Mr Vowles was not a
caravanner. "He preferred to go bush in an old tent," Ms Preston said.
Mr Vowles had a son in New Zealand and daughter in England. He was
planning to visit England next year to see his grandchild.
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