Cameron and Kiera Grieve tell a press conference about the tragic events which led to their mother Pauline's drowning on Sunday. Also pictured here is Pauline's sister Lara Thompson.
Cameron and Kiera Grieve tell a press conference about the tragic events which led to their mother Pauline's drowning on Sunday. Also pictured here is Pauline's sister Lara Thompson. Picture: Chris Ison.

Son recalls watching mum drown

CAMERON Grieve’s last sight of his mother Pauline before she slipped from reach at Bouldercombe Gorge on Sunday is still haunting him.

 “The last thing I saw was her face, looking at me gasping for breath,” a brave Cameron told a media conference in Rockhampton this morning.

“And I just can’t get that out of my head. It’s just really hard.” 

Pauline, 46, who had recently been living in Yeppoon, died after being swept away.

After what started out as a “good day out,” her 17-year-old son was stripped naked by the ferocious “wall of water” which ripped through the gorge on Sunday. 

“I went under, just looked up, couldn’t find her. Kept going, and I held onto a tree for 5-10 minutes. 

"Then I saw backwash with a big pool and went straight into that. Lost everything. I was completely naked. Got out, kept running down the stream and all five of us were continuing down the stream and just kept running. Didn’t stop.  

"And that’s when Nerina (another day-tripper at the gorge) and her friends saw mum go past the car park. And we stopped there. They were yelling out to us. We kept going.” 

Pauline’s sister Lara described the ferocity of the water flowing through the gorge.

“It was just too strong. It took us under the tree. I was just holding it, it’s all I can remember.

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