Father's search in vain as Taunton man Paul Nation found dead in Australia after seven weeks missing (From Somerset County Gazette)
Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting COUNTY GAZETTE to 80360 or email us
Father's search in vain as Taunton man Paul Nation found dead in Australia after seven weeks missing
A HEARTBROKEN father from Taunton has spoken of his desperate search to find his son in the Australian outback.
Devastated Jim Nation, of Calvados Road, flew out from the UK in an attempt to find Paul, 43, who had not been seen for seven weeks.
Jim spent three weeks trekking up Australia’s west coast but father-of-three Paul, who leaves behind wife Clare, was found on Monday (October 7).
Speaking at his home this week, Jim said: “I’ve never met so many kind people in my life while I was out there – everybody was absolutely fantastic.
“I travelled up and down the coast where he used to go surfing and on his bike, handing out leaflets and speaking to locals.
“He was loved by everybody and he had a lot of friends here; he’ll definitely be missed.”
Paul – who emigrated from Taunton 16 years ago – went missing on August 20 and was last seen near his home in Perth.
His story received a phenomenal response from the public after airing on the news while hundreds of messages were left on Facebook.
It was then that Jim took the decision to fly over and join in the desperate hunt for his son, giving a heartbreaking TV interview.
Jim, 66, added: “People were telling us they thought they’d seen him.
“We had three apparent sightings in the same place so that gave us hope but sadly it wasn’t to be.”
Paul’s sister Jo Knutt, who still lives in the house her brother grew up in on Lisieux Way, described him as a “character” and said she had been contacted by old friends.
Keen cyclist Paul, an ex-student at the former Priorswood Secondary School, had moved to Australia after meeting Clare while surfing in Bali, Indonesia.
They have two daughters aged 15 and 12 and a son who turned six yesterday (Wednesday).
Writing on Facebook, Clare described Paul as a “very special man, husband, father and friend who will so dearly be missed by us all”.
Close friend Joe Beauchamp, from Taunton, added: “Paul was the life and soul of the party.
“He was a family man – he always put family first, then work, then everything else he loved.
“I know the boys will miss him.”
An inquest into his death was due to be opened in Australia yesterday.
Did you know Paul? Leave your tribute below.
Comments are closed on this article.