WATCH: Tears flow as Tobruk leaves port
MEN and women have been wiping back tears as two years of preparation finally come to fruition.
At the crack of dawn this morning they gathered at the Port of Bundaberg to be part of the ex-HMAS Tobruk's final journey before it is sunk tomorrow and begins its new life as a world-class dive wreck.
Between 400-500 tonnes of material has been removed from the Tobruk since it was brought into port in the Burnett River.
She is now on her way to her final resting place, 40km off the coast of Bundaberg.
She is being towed by two tug boats and will be joined by a third tomorrow.
About 3000 people crowded at the port to watch the Tobruk come in and while there was a much lesser crowd there this morning, emotions were high as those who have worked tirelessly to make this happen say their final goodbyes.
Steve Hoseck has been with the Tobruk since it was brought into port and said today was a very proud moment for him.
"This is a fantastic day for us, the project team, who have been entrusted with preparing the ship for scuttling. We have been working very closely with our contractors, Birdon, and it's a very proud moment to see it towed out and tomorrow, watching it be scuttled, is going to be absolutely unbelievable," he said.
"It's been lots of hard work, I've been on the project from the word go. I was here when it came in and it was handed over from defence to us and I'm seeing it go out today, so yeah, a very proud moment.
"It's a whole new chapter. For me, I'm a diver as well, so I can't wait to dive it, that's what I'm looking forward to. Seeing it going down that's one side of the work, but for me it's seeing it underwater and developed into a dive site is what I'm waiting for as well."