Shark attack victim Doreen Ann Collyer has been remembered as a “pillar of the community” as tributes flow on social media, while a crowd funding page aims to create a scholarship in her honour.
The Edith Cowan University nursing and midwifery lecturer was mauled by a shark – possibly by a great – while diving with a friend about one kilometre off Mindarie, in Perth’s outer northern suburbs, just before midday on Sunday.
The 60-year-old grandmother had emigrated from Neston in the UK to Western Australia with her husband, David, about five years ago and had recently become an Australian citizen.
Former students have remembered Ms Collyer fondly on Facebook, with several people describing her as a lovely person.
Graham Last posted: “You guided me and supported me and pushed me to be the nurse I am today … I will always remember you and strive to become the best paediatric nurse I can”.
Eleonora Deak wrote: “Grateful to have had her as one of my teachers for neonatal care. Loved conversations with her comparing UK and Australian nurse education systems”.
Ms Collyer’s friend Tracey Harris said: “Just came home after a wonderful weekend getaway with not much phone service to find out that a really beautiful friend, diver Doreen Collyer has tragically been taken at sea … She will be missed by many and remembered by us all”.
Shaun Owen posted: “I learnt to dive around the same time as Doreen and dived with her several times. A great loss of a wonderful lady.”
A GoFundMe page has been set up in memory of Ms Collyer aimed at raising money for a scholarship in her name and continuing her passion for research in nursing and paediatric care.
It is also hoped a memorial bench or plaque will be made in her honour.
“Please support this fund to allow Doreen’s family, colleagues and students to recognise what an amazing pillar of the community she was and how she touched the hearts of so many people,” the page read.
Ms Collyer’s death came five days after surfer Ben Gerring was attacked at Falcon, south of Perth. The 29-year-old died in hospital on Friday night.
A GoFundMe page for Mr Gerring’s pregnant fiancee, Jasmine Boyer, has so far raised more than $47,100 as of Tuesday afternoon.