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Photographs supplied by Erich Nussbaumer

The seat and plaque commemorate Luke Adam Jacobs who drowned at "The Hat" while attempting to save his cousin in 2010. The seat is in the vicinity of a memorial cross erected by family and friends. 

It's been a long process, but creating a memorial for her son was just something Suzie Wheatley had to do. "It finalises everything," she said. Luke Jacobs drowned at "the hat" off the Mersey Bluff in Devonport on December 12, 2010. The 27-year-old was trying to save his 15-year-old cousin, Zachary Verhoeven, who survived. Mrs Wheatley wanted something at "the hat" to remember her son and was pleased to finally have a bench with a memorial plaque and a warning to swimmers in place. "When I think about where Luke is, he's here, this is where I remember him," she said. "I come up here for walks most mornings and on weekends, sometimes I'll put flowers down and look at the water. "Now I'll have somewhere to sit for a little while." Mrs Wheatley said when the police knocked on her door, she instantly knew it was her son who was in trouble. "I didn't know he was dead, but I said `it's Luke isn't it?' That's just the sort of person he was. Always up to mischief," she said. Mrs Wheatley said she never knew that kids jumped off "the hat" and hoped the memorial plaque and warning would deter others. "It was so rough the day Luke drowned, I couldn't believe they would even come up here," she said.

Mrs Wheatley said friends of Mr Jacobs had placed a cross at the site and she hoped the memorial bench would be somewhere people who knew him would come. "Although there were a lot of obstacles along the way, persistence has paid off and now the plaque has been placed in a location for all to see adjacent to `the hat' also bearing a message alerting all people attempting to swim there of the consequences to their family and friends if they get into difficulty." Mrs Wheatley thanked the Devonport City Council and Leister Jackson for their help getting the plaque at "the hat" and the Devonport Surf Life Saving Club for its prompt actions on the day. "There could well have been two lives lost that day, not just one. My son died a hero and this kind gesture from the council now gives all the opportunity to remember him for his selfless act," she said. A sunset vigil will be held on the anniversary of Mr Jacobs death at "the hat" from 6pm on December 12. Mr Jacobs' ashes will be scattered in the ocean on the anniversary of his death. Mrs Wheatley would like Mr Jacobs' friends to join the family in remembering him.
The Advocate, 16 October 2011



Address:Bluff Access Road, near Mersey Bluff Lighthouse, Devonport, 7310
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -41.158833
Long: 146.355444
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Seat
Monument Theme:People
Actual Event Start Date:12-December-2010
Actual Event End Date:12-December-2010


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:October-2011
Front Inscription

Plaque on seat:
In loving memory of
Luke Adam Jacobs
Aged 27 Years

Drowned at 'The Hat' 
whilst saving the life of a mate 
in difficulty on 12/12/2010

To all proceeding past this point with the intention of swimming in this
area; please consider the consequences of whay may happen if you
get into difficulty and the effect it may have on your family and friends 

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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