Wedding day heartbreak for couple

TODAY should have been cause for joy for Ash Hickman and Tam Matthews - instead the Cairns groom lies in a critical condition while his bride keeps a bedside vigil.

Mr Hickman, 32, was flown from Bali's Kuta Hospital yesterday by air ambulance to Western Australia after a freak accident left him with a fractured skull and in a coma last week.

The Smithfield painter was deemed to be stable enough for a medevac after initial fears he would need to stay in Bali for weeks.

Complications from the flight required him to be returned to the operating theatre at the Royal Perth Hospital.

Ash Hickman suffered a fractured skull after a road accident on his buck's weekend in Bali
Ash Hickman suffered a fractured skull after a road accident on his buck's weekend in Bali

"Ashley was assessed by the team here and it was found that he needed to undergo surgery," Ms Matthews posted on social media from Perth.

"He is once again critical and in an induced coma."

It is understood that part of Mr Hickman's skull was removed to reduce swelling and bleeding.

For Ms Mathews and Mr Hickman's family the next week will be one of the hardest of their lives as they wait and watch for signs of recovery.

The couple, who have been together for eight years, had planned to be married at Trinity Park's Bluewater today.

Ashley Hickman (left) has been flown to the Royal Perth Hospital for further treatment after a freak accident in Bali
Ashley Hickman (left) has been flown to the Royal Perth Hospital for further treatment after a freak accident in Bali

Ms Matthews was having a final dress fitting last weekend when she was told of the accident.

A Go Fund Me campaign has been launched to raise money for Mr Hickman's medical expenses and raffle tickets are on sale for a fundraiser at Q Sports Bar on Sheridan St, which will be drawn next month.

So far more than $27,000 has been raised for $75,000 in medical costs.

Mr Hickman held travel insurance while in Bali, but was not covered for medical bills because he did not hold an international driver's licence for the moped.



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