Old boat wrecked in low act

Whitsunday Times - - NEWS - Peter Carruthers Peter.Carruthers@ news­re­gional­me­dia.com.au

JOE Hawkes woke on Sun­day morn­ing to find his 20-foot mo­tor launch smashed up.

He said he was “dis­gusted” by the low act.

On Satur­day night Mr Hawkes’ neigh­bour had a party which was at­tended by gate­crash­ers.

Mr Hawkes said he be­lieved the un­in­vited guests were re­spon­si­ble for the smashed wind­screen pan­els, steer­ing wheel and a com­pass of the old fi­bre­glass mo­tor launch.

The un­pro­voked at­tack has left the 65-year-old Paulma Rd prop­erty owner scratch­ing his head and ask­ing “why?”

Mr Hawkes says he doesn’t have the money to re­pair the boat. He bought it as a project but it has never seen the wa­ter since he has owned it.

“I have got the en­gine over at the shed there to do up and a prop shaft is be­ing made. It was al­most ready to put back on the wa­ter and ready to use and now it has a lot more to do to it.

“I am not in a po­si­tion phys­i­cally or fi­nan­cially to do it at the mo­ment.”

Five years ago Mr Hawkes un­der­went a quadru­ple by­pass, he has type two di­a­betes and suf­fers from se­vere em­phy­sema.

Born in Proser­pine, Mr Hawkes and his fa­ther

❝I am just dis­gusted that any­one would do it. They ripped the steer­ing wheel off, smashed the com­pass and ripped the awning cov­ers off. — Joe Hawkes

Gra­ham founded Hawkes’ Boat­yard which is now in the Abell Point Ma­rina com­plex.

Buy­ing the first block ever sold on Paluma Rd in 1980, Mr Hawkes had plans for a co­conut plan­ta­tion but this idea never be­came a re­al­ity.

Mr Hawkes said he had no idea why any­one would van­dalise his boat.

“I am just dis­gusted that any­one would do it. They ripped the steer­ing wheel off, smashed the com­pass and ripped the awning cov­ers off.’’

Proser­pine po­lice were called on Sun­day and are in­ves­ti­gat­ing the wil­ful dam­age of Mr Hawkes’ ves­sel.

Whit­sun­day Po­lice said in­ves­ti­ga­tions were con­tin­u­ing but no sus­pects had been iden­ti­fied at this stage.

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion about the act of van­dal­ism on Paluma Rd on Satur­day night is asked to con­tact po­lice on 4948 8888.

A re­ward is of­fered for in­for­ma­tion lead­ing to the ar­rest of the peo­ple re­spon­si­ble for the dam­age.

PHOTO: PETER CARRUTHERS

NOT HAPPY: Paluma Rd res­i­dent Joe Hawkes is dis­ap­pointed by a sense­less act of van­dal­ism.

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