Gold Coast boy dies in hospital after being injured while playing with Sea World toy, family says


The family of a six-year-old Gold Coast boy says he has died in hospital after being allegedly severely injured on Anzac Day by a toy purchased from Sea World.

According to a crowd-funding page, Deklan Babington-MacDonald’s life support was turned off at the weekend, after doctors told his family his injuries were “beyond recovery”.

The boy had allegedly been playing with a toy purchased from Sea World at his Nerang home on Sunday April 25, when his mother found him unresponsive.

According to the fundraising page, the family performed CPR on the boy before he was rushed to the Queensland Children’s Hospital to be treated for critical injuries.

The six-year-old remained on life support from Sunday until Friday, when his life support was turned off by doctors.

According to the page, he died “surrounded by his closest family, extended family and some close friends”.

“They [the family] are reading the beautiful messages of support and love, and appreciate all the kindness and donations,” Deklan’s aunt wrote.

She said a memorial would be organised for Deklan in the near future.

In a statement issued last week, Village Roadshow Theme Parks said it had removed the toy in question from sale.

A spokesperson said it was a “plush-toy walker”, which looks like a penguin wearing a harness, attached to a lead or stick.

Village Roadshow said it would fully cooperate with all investigations into the matter, and was distressed to hear of the accident.

“We need to understand the circumstances around what has occurred,” the statement said.

“As our number one priority is always health and safety, we have removed the toy in question from sale at this time.

“We will also be reaching out to Deklan’s family to offer support.”

According to the spokesperson, while the toy is no longer for sale, a full investigation will need to take place before it is entirely recalled.

The fundraiser for Deklan’s family has so far raised almost $15,000.

Queensland Police said it was not treating the boy’s death as suspicious.

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Chris Cornell’s family settles with doctor


The family of the late singer Chris Cornell and a doctor they alleged over-prescribed him drugs before he died have agreed to a settle a lawsuit.

Court documents filed by lawyers for the rock star’s widow, Vicky Cornell, and their children, Toni and Christopher Nicholas Cornell, said a confidential settlement had been reached.

The documents were filed in April, but they had gone unnoticed before City News Service reported on them on Thursday.

The Cornell family alleged in the lawsuit filed in 2018 in Los Angeles Superior Court that medication, especially the anti-anxiety drug lorazepam, prescribed by Dr Robert Koblin, led to erratic behaviour from the Soundgarden frontman before his death in Detroit in 2017 at age 52.

Coroner’s investigators in Michigan ruled Cornell’s death a suicide by hanging.

Tests showed the presence of lorazepam, better known by its brand name Ativan, in Cornell’s system along with barbiturates and the anti-opioid drug naloxone, but did not cite them as a factor in his death.

The lawsuit said Koblin and his Beverly Hills, California, office “negligently and repeatedly” prescribed “dangerous, mind-altering controlled substances to Chris Cornell which impaired Cornell’s cognition, clouded his judgment, and caused him to engage in dangerous impulsive behaviours that he was unable to control, costing him his life”.

The lawsuit said the doctor did this knowing Cornell had a serious history of substance abuse.

In court documents responding to the lawsuit, Koblin and his lawyer denied any wrongdoing or responsibility for Cornell’s death.

“After years of litigation and settlement negotiations, plaintiffs and defendants … have reached a confidential settlement agreement to resolve all claims,” the Cornell family lawyers say in the court filing.

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Family of children killed in Sydney crash ‘devastated’ as memorial garden plan rejected


The families of four children who were killed when they were hit by a drunk driver while walking to get an ice-cream in Sydney‘s west say they are “devastated” plans for a commemorative garden nearby have been shelved.

The Abdallah, Sakr and Kassas families wanted the tribute, including four headstones, to be created at Oatlands Golf Club near where the children were killed.

They say they worked with Parramatta Council on the plan for the special garden.

The Abdallah, Sakr and Kassas families wanted the tribute, including four headstones, to be created at Oatlands Golf Club near where the children were killed. (9News)

But after earlier rejecting plans, the club said the garden the families wanted was too big and said it has “decided to close negotiations.”  

The families say they want the club officials to reconsider.

“We are devastated by the decision of the Oatlands Golf Club Board to end discussions for a modest commemorative garden on the edge of the golf course where our children were killed,” they said in a statement.

Oatlands
The plans for the garden in Sydney. (Supplied)
Oatlands crash garden
What the garden would have looked like. (Supplied)

“We respectfully ask the Board to reconsider its decision so that our children can be honoured and the community can have a place to remember the Oatlands Tragedy which had such an impact on our nation.

“We love our children dearly and we will always grieve the loss of our beautiful kids. Our proposed commemorative garden simply honours our children.”

The Golf Club said it had discussed plans for a “modest memorial consisting of four small memorial stones, set in a garden.”

Abdallah siblings Sienna, 8, Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13, died at the scene in Oatlands alongside their 11-year-old cousin Veronique Sakr.
Abdallah siblings Sienna, 8, Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13, died at the scene in Oatlands alongside their 11-year-old cousin Veronique Sakr. (AAP)

But it said all the concepts submitted by Parramatta Council on behalf of the family have been “well outside the scale of what had been communicated as appropriate.”

“Following media coverage in February 2021, and in order to progress the matter, the Club called a meeting on 26th March 2021 with the families, Parramatta Council and Minister Lee and requested support from the families for a memorial of a modest scale,” General Manager Sam Howe, said in a statement.

“This was rejected by the families, and at the meeting the parties indicated that a revised proposal would be provided to the Club for consideration.

Oatlands crash
Flowers left at the spot close to where the memorial was planned. (Nine)

“A revised concept, similar in size to concepts previously rejected, was submitted to the Club in April 2021.

“Given the scale of the revised concept, the Board has also rejected it as unsuitable.  

“The Board and Management recognise the terrible tragedy caused by this accident, while at the same time recognising our responsibility to the Club and its members.

“In light of there being no support from the families for a memorial that the Board has deemed appropriate to take to the membership, the Board has decided to close negotiations. ” 

Leila Geagea (middle) and daughter (left) are seen during the funeral for her children Antony Abdallah, 13, Angelina Abdallah, 12, and Sienna Abdallah, 8, at Our Lady of Lebanon Co-Cathedral in Sydney, Monday, February 10, 2020.
Leila Geagea (middle) and daughter (left) during the funeral for her children Antony Abdallah, 13, Angelina Abdallah, 12, and Sienna Abdallah, 8, at Our Lady of Lebanon Co-Cathedral in Sydney, last February. (AAP)

Samuel Davidson was drunk and travelling 133km/h in a 50km/h zone when he ploughed into children as they were walking and riding bikes on the footpath in Oatlands in February 2020.

Abdallah siblings Antony, Angelina and Sienna, along with their cousin Veronique Sakr, were killed.

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Light the Night – annual domestic family violence remembrance ceremony


Every week at least one women is killed as a result of domestic and family violence.

When:

From: 5:45 PM to 6:30 PM,
Wednesday, 5 May 2021

Where:

Rotary Broadwater Chapel – Broadwater Parklands

Cost:

Free

Type:

Public

Contact:

Louise Gorman

Organisation:

Domestic Violence Prevention Centre

Phone:

0408 972 810

Email:

l.gorman@domesticviolence.com.au

Web:

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City Hall to introduce ‘family friendly’ meeting hours


By Matt Dennien

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The Design Files: The family of five who made a mid-century house their forever home


Who: The Costen family

What: An intact mid-century home located on the former site of Koornong Experimental School where fashion designer Vy Costen, her husband Andrew, a marine scientist, and their three young children live.

Where: North Warrandyte, Victoria

Five years ago, designer Vy Costen and her husband, marine scientist Andrew Costen, went searching for a family home. They were seeking a property where they could establish roots and become involved in their local community.

After 12 months, they finally came across this North Warrandyte house.

All the stone work in this house is believed to be by local stonemasons McAulay Brothers who did a lot of work in the area for Robin Boyd.  Styling: Annie Portelli.
All the stone work in this house is believed to be by local stonemasons McAulay Brothers who did a lot of work in the area for Robin Boyd. Styling: Annie Portelli. Photo: Caitlin Mills

“I could tell there was a lot of work to be done just from the images online, so I gave Andrew every reason not to buy it, but in my heart, I knew it was ‘the one’,” Vy says. ‘This was going to be our forever home.”

The house sits on the site of the former Koornong Experimental School that operated here in the 1940s. Following its closure, the property was subdivided into 12 blocks, with Vy and Andrew’s house completed by an unknown architect between 1953 and 1955.

Styling: Annie Portelli.
Original room partition, Alfred Christensen ‘Boomerang’ dining chairs, and Parker dining table that came with house. Styling: Annie Portelli. Photo: Caitlin Mills

Since moving into the home, the couple have made several cosmetic updates, including polishing the existing concrete slab and establishing a native garden.

The only structural change has been the conversion of one of the bathrooms into a workplace for Vy, designer and owner of the knitwear label Stay Hungry.

Vy and Andrew hope to eventually restore the gas fireplace to the original two-way model. Armadillo & Co rugs. Styling: Annie Portelli.
Vy and Andrew hope to eventually restore the gas fireplace to the original two-way model. Styling: Annie Portelli. Photo: Caitlin Mills

Among the untouched original features that remain are the blackbutt timber ceilings, the kitchen, including its downlight fittings and joinery, and a pool that’s been unused for 35 years.

Most of the furnishings are vintage Scandinavian pieces chosen to ground the space.

Hand shadows print from Hello Lunch Lady. ‘Emotions’ illustration in blue frame by Liv Whitehouse. Wrapped knot wall hanging, knitted monkey and yarn wrapped branches all made by Vy. Bedlinen is a mix of Sack Me and Goosebumps. Cushions and ottoman by Sage and Clare. Rug by Armadillo & Co. Vintage kerosene chests used as a bedside table. Pop and Scott pot. Styling: Annie Portelli.
There’s plenty of space for the boys to play in their bedroom. Styling: Annie Portelli. Photo: Caitlin Mills

“This is all softened up with lots of greenery, books, art and little handmade treasures we’ve made or found in vintage bazaars over the years,” Vy says. “With three young boys ruling the space, it’s all pretty robust and relaxed as a whole.”

Vy and Andrew describe the home as a well-designed, little glass pavilion set among the beautiful bush-scape. “It’s perfectly positioned and orientated with heaps of room for our boys to play,” Vy says. “We love the clean lines, the floating roofline and that unmistakable mid-century vibe. It has a soul.”

How to modernise a mid-century home

Original bedhead joinery and wall lamp, Pop & Scott ‘Dreamweaver’ pendant light, Ikea Mirror, Bill Coleman ink drawing, Mark Gambino ceramic pot. The bedlinen a mix of Sage and Clare and Deiji Studios.  Styling: Annie Portelli.
The main bedroom features the original bedhead joinery and wall lamp. Styling: Annie Portelli. Photo: Caitlin Mills

Homes from the 1950s, ’60s and even the ’70s have never been more coveted. They are favoured for their strong design credentials, robust construction and craftsmanship, generous floor plans, and bucketloads of natural light.

But there’s still the challenge of making these homes functional and comfortable for modern family life. There’s no denying that many of these homes do require sensitive updating.

Consider the following before embarking on a renovation.

  • Do your research. Seek information about your home’s architect and original design; understanding the home’s history will greatly enhance your design.
  • Take time with the floor plan, and be willing to change your plans, if needed, to retain original features.
  • Extensions shouldn’t seek to replace the existing architecture, nor to replicate it. It’s OK for a contemporary addition to feel new, but it should complement and be informed by the original design.
  • Minimise demolition at all costs. Original features convey the language of mid-century and, once gone, the authentic feeling of the era cannot be replicated.

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Gary Neville tells Glazer family to sell Manchester United: ‘The fans are saying time is up’


United’s clash against Liverpool was called off after fans broke into Old Trafford and invaded the pitch during a protest against the Glazer family.

The Red Devils were among 12 clubs that last month signed up for the breakaway European Super League, which collapsed within 48 hours due to huge, unrelenting pressure.

Those plans brought anger against the already despised Glazer family to a new level, with fans congregating at Old Trafford to demand change ahead of Sunday’s Premier League match against rivals Liverpool.

But hundreds of supporters got into the stadium and on to the pitch, leading to an initial unspecified delay to the 4:30pm BST kick-off.

The Premier League said that “the safety of everyone at Old Trafford is paramount” and confirmation came through from United at 5:30pm that the match had been postponed.

Former United captain Neville has been highly critical of the owners of the 12 teams who insitgated the failed Super League proposals, and believes it is now time for the Glazer family to sell the club amid fan discontent and a lack of investment.

Neville, who was at Old Trafford working for Sky Sports News during the protests, said: “There’s huge discontent. They’re basically saying enough is enough.

“The Glazer family have been resilient and stubborn for many years. I think they’re struggling for many, many years to meet the financial demands this club needs and have done for some time.

“This stadium, if you go behind the scenes, is rusty and rotting. The training ground is probably not even in the top five in this country.

“They haven’t got to a Champions League semi-final for 10 years and haven’t won the league for eight. The land around the ground is undeveloped, dormant and derelict when every other club seems to be developing their facilities and their fan experiences.

“The Glazer family are struggling to meet the financial requirements and the fans are saying the time is up.

“They’re going to make a fortune if they sell this football club. If they were to put it up for sale now I think the time would be right and it’d be the honourable thing to do.”

Additional reporting by PA.

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CHILLAX family meditation and relaxation

Date & time

Sun 2 May 2021
3:00pm to 4:00pm

Age

All ages. Children require parent/guardian supervision.

Cost

Free

For a calm mind, creative thinking, mental clarity, alertness and overall physical well-being. A great start to your week!

Bookings

No bookings required. For more information phone Deanna from Yoga Mind Body Brisbane on 0401 247 328.

Requirements

Yoga mat and towel.

Meeting point

Meet at Daphne Fancutt Amphitheatre (opposite QLD Tennis Centre).

Venue

Ken Fletcher Park, 167 King Arthur Terrace, Tennyson

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Police questioning two men over robbery of Abdallah family home


Police are questioning two men pulled over in a car similar to the one seen outside the Abdallah family home after two thieves allegedly broke in and stole precious items.

Leila Abdallah, whose three young children were killed when they were struck by a drunk driver, was at home with a friend looking at photographs of her children when the thief smashed his way in.

Police are hunting this man who broke into the home of the Abdallah family.
Police are hunting this man who broke into the home of the Abdallah family. (NSW Police)

Ms Abdallah said she was in the kitchen around lunchtime when she noticed a stranger running out, carrying bags of her personal things.

“I was too focused on my kids’ pictures, Anthony and Angelina’s and Sienna’s videos, I didn’t feel it, I just felt him leaving,” Mrs Abdallah told 9News today.

When confronted, the thief fled with a bag packed with jewellery and other personal items.

He got into the front seat of a stolen Audi S3 Sedan and drove away.

Authorities are now questioning two men spotted in a similar vehicle last night, NSW Police have told 9News reporter Gabrielle Boyle.

Speaking to 9News, Mrs Abdallah said she felt silly appealing to the public over the burglary.

“They’re just material things,” she said.

But some of the items hold sentimental value. She believes the mobile phone of her late son Antony may have been stolen.

Mrs Abdallah also said a watch belonging to her daughter was taken.

“He took a watch, but it’s not about the watch, I remember walking with Angelina to the store to buy the watch.

Detective Superintendent Darryl Jobson said Mrs Abdallah and her friend were “shaken and unsettled” by the home invasion.

Leila Geagea Abdallah (middle) and daughter (left) are seen during the funeral for her children Antony Abdallah, 13, Angelina Abdallah, 12, and Sienna Abdallah, 8, at Our Lady of Lebanon Co-Cathedral in Sydney
Leila Geagea Abdallah (middle) and daughter (left) are seen during the funeral for her children Antony Abdallah, 13, Angelina Abdallah, 12, and Sienna Abdallah, 8, at Our Lady of Lebanon Co-Cathedral in Sydney. (AAP)

“In the last 12 months the victims have endured an incredible ordeal and I appeal to the conscience of the people responsible for this crime to hand themselves in to the police,” he said.

“I also appeal to them to return the property of those victims. If you don’t have a conscience, we will get your names and we will be knocking on your door.”

Mr Jobson said the burglary appeared to be opportunistic.

“It is absolutely disgusting. It is absolutely abhorrent to enter a home while people are there,” he said.

The front door was not locked at the time.

Abdallah siblings Sienna, 8, Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13, died at the scene in Oatlands alongside their 11-year-old cousin Veronique Sakr.
Abdallah siblings Sienna, 8, Angelina, 12, and Antony, 13, died at the scene in Oatlands alongside their 11-year-old cousin Veronique Sakr. (AAP)

Police aerial and dog units were dispatched but were unable to find the suspects.

The Audi is believed to have been stolen from a home in North Rocks between 10pm Monday and 6am Tuesday.

Police describe the thief as blond, Caucasian, about 183cm tall, between 20 and 25 and skinny.

He was wearing a black baseball cap, a black face mask, black track pants and a blue hooded jumper.

The getaway driver is described only as having blond hair.

Earlier this month Samuel Davidson was jailed for a minimum of 21 years for four counts of manslaughter.

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Julia James: Family tributes to killed community police officer


The family of a police community support officer found dead in woodland said she “was fiercely loyal” and “loved with her whole heart.”

The body of Julia James, 53, was found in Akholt Wood, Snowdown, near Dover, on Tuesday.

She died from “significant head injuries” and a murder inquiry is under way, Kent Police said.

‘There are no words to adequately describe the void left in our lives,” her family said in statement.

“She was so naturally funny with a brilliant sense of humour,” they added.

A post-mortem examination carried out on Thursday concluded she died from a blunt force trauma, police said.

Ms James, whose body was found a few hundred yards from her house, had been taking her dog for a walk when she was killed. The pet was found unharmed at the scene.

She joined the force as a PCSO in 2008 and had more recently been working with victims of domestic abuse while based in Canterbury.

Ms James had been working from home on the day she died, and was not in uniform when she was found, police said.

Her family said they were “trying to understand how we will navigate our lives without her,” adding: “It seems an impossible task”.

She was a “fiercely loyal” wife, mother, daughter, grandmother, sister and friend, who “loved with her whole heart,” her family said.

“Nothing was too much trouble for the people she cared about,” the statement added.

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