Shark attack victim takes first steps after horror mauling

Burnie woman takes first steps after shark attack in the Whitsundays

National News
Justine Barwick with her husband Craig in a Brisbane hospital

Justine Barwick with her husband Craig in a Brisbane hospital


Justine Barwick is walking again after shark attack.


Justine Barwick is making good progress in the initial phases of her recovery at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital.

Mrs Barwick, 46, from Burnie, was snorkeling near a yacht at the Whitsundays in Queensland when she was mauled by a shark, leaving her with severe leg and torso injuries last week.

Mrs Barwick said she was learning to walk again but there were many hours of physio and occupational therapy sessions in her future.

She told her colleagues at Family Based Care that she hoped to be back to her work as soon as she could, but it was going to take awhile.

“Work for me isn’t just a job; it is a family.”

Justine’s husband Craig Barwick said it was her second day getting out of bed and her progress was going as well as could be expected.

“Today in her walk to the chair Justine did a 10-metre return trip on her own two legs with assistance from the physiotherapist,” Mr Barwick said.

Family Based Care CEO Douglass Doherty has reminded his staff to go to the Red Cross and give blood to replace the blood used in saving Justine’s life.  

“If you ever needed a reason to donate blood you don’t anymore, blood transfusions were a key factor in saving Justine’s life,” Mr Doherty told his staff.

The Advocate