Dad’s brush with death after welding explosion
THE explosion that left Peter Grupe with a "shattered face" shook Ningi and could be heard on Bribie Island.
He was left with more than nine plates in his face and eating through a straw, but it could have been much worse for the young father of two.
Peter was welding alone in his Ningi shed when a 44-gallon drum exploded, but the details are hazy because he sustained short-term memory loss in the accident.
His wife, Carissa, and two children, Rocky and Carson, were in the house when the explosion happened.
"It was like a bomb went off," Carissa said.
"You could never describe it - it was like your worst nightmare.
"We're at Ningi. It rattled the houses around us and the blast was heard on Bribie.
"His whole face was shattered, too many times to count.
"He doesn't remember it happening and probably won't. He only knows from us telling him."
Six weeks later and Peter has most of his vision back and is walking again, despite fears he would have to be taught again.
But the full extent of his injuries are still unknown as his brain slowly recovers.
It's been a draining process for Carissa who has been by his side every day since the accident.
"I'm exhausted physically and mentally, but I have to be okay and look after the kids and help him too.
"He knows he's lucky to be alive, he's emotional, but he's very determined and is doing everything they ask him.
"He wants to come home and he wants to get back to work, because he misses his family."
Peter has been given the all-clear to go home on weekends, but it has left Carissa to care for the entire family.
She can't work because of a pre-existing medical condition, so friends have rallied to hold a car show fundraiser at Ningi Plaza, Bribie Island Rd on July 23 from 5pm to 8pm with all money going to the Grupe family.
Peter used to be heavily involved with car clubs.