News

Cowper survivors reunited in unbearable loss

Cowper bus crash survivors Angela Ormesher and Glenn Askew have a chat looking over the highway at Cowper after the ceremony commemorating the 25th anniversary of the crash.
Cowper bus crash survivors Angela Ormesher and Glenn Askew have a chat looking over the highway at Cowper after the ceremony commemorating the 25th anniversary of the crash.

COWPER bus crash survivor Glenn Askew remembers the Ormesher family boarding the ill-fated Sunliner coach 25 years ago like it was yesterday.

"I was all set up in my seat. I had my blanket ready, my pillow ready and my chocolates ready," he said.

"Then this lady from head office got on and said she had a big family booking and would I mind moving to another seat."

The rest is history. Despite some horrific injuries that ended his career as a concert pianist, Mr Askew survived the crash.

Mrs Ormesher and her husband Colin also survived, but for two children and six members of their extended family tragedy struck that morning.

Yesterday, the pair met up again at the site of the crash, which occurred at around 4am on Friday, October 20, 1989.

It was the first time since that day the pair had met.

Mrs Ormesher has no memory of the crash itself.

Suffering severe head injuries, she was airlifted from the scene on the orders of Grafton's Dr Ray Jones.

To this day, Mrs Ormesher and Dr Jones remain friends.

Yesterday she joked she could not remember what it was like to ride in a helicopter and would have to try it one day.

Mr Askew said the change of seat saved his life, but it was not something he took comfort from.

"Knowing that, it is like a two-edged sword," he said.

Mrs Ormesher and Mr Askew were the only two crash survivors at yesterday's 25th Cowper Bus Crash Memorial Ceremony.

About 70 people attended the ceremony organised by ecumenical group Ministers Fraternal.

Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis read a letter from NSW Governor General David Hurley.

Topics:  cowper bus crash, memorial, pacific highway




LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Football brawls a blight on game

With claret streaming down his face, Ghosts' captain coach Ben McLennan stands toe-to-toe with a Comets forward during the Grafton Ghosts and Coffs Harbour Comets Group 2 qualifying final at Frank McGuren Field.

Grubby play too regular in Group 2 rugby league

Council election candidates reveal appetite for change

Council election candidate Andrew Baker says three other members of the last council: Karen Toms, Jim Simmons and Margaret McKenna should be preferenced after him on ballot paper because of their consistent opposition to plans to slug rate payers with special rate rises.

Clarence Valley Council candidates meet the public at Lawrence.

Rain set to continue throughout Wednesday

No flood watch warnings in place

Latest deals and offers

Folk singer looking forward to her Gympie Muster debut

Alternative country folk singer Fanny Lumsden will perform at the Gympie Muster.

FANNY Lumsden to serenade new fans with her country hall-style show.

Patti Smith, Billy Bragg, Buddy Guy on 2017 Bluesfest bill

Patti Smith is one of the headline acts confirmed for Bluesfest 2017.

Patti, Billy, Buddy and more to headline five-day festival

Patti Smith confirmed for Bluesfest 2017

CONFIRMED: US singer Patti Smith performing in Switzerland last year.

Find out who else in the first line up announcement

Angie and Yvie ready to toast The Bachelor on Gogglebox

Angie and Yvie in a scene from the TV series Gogglebox.

ALL the regulars return in TV show about people watching TV.

Morgan Freeman asks: are we alone? Why do humans exist?

Morgan Freeman in Through the Wormhole. Photo: Discovery Science

Question all you thought you knew, on Foxtel.

You are going to Falls for this music line-up

CONFIRMED: Local artist Bernard Fanning is part of the line up for Falls Festival Byron Bay.

The line-up and ticket purchase details have been announced.

Cheap Fraser Coast island drops its price

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep