News

Bali bombing made me a stronger person, says survivor

A BALI bombing survivor who lost two of her friends 10 years ago today says she feels like the luckiest person alive, despite the horrific tragedy.

Sunshine Coast-based motivational speaker Carren Smith said today was 'bittersweet' in that she had lost her best friend but come out of the tragedy a stronger person.

The former accountant had travelled to Bali with two friends to get over the loss of her partner, who had taken his life.

She was in the Sari Club on the first night of her holiday with her friends.

Minutes later, she was on the floor among bodies, surrounded by fire.

She managed to make her way out of the club before being taken to a local medical centre.

Defying local doctors, she boarded a flight to Sydney less than a day after the bombs went off for life-saving surgery to her crushed skull.

Just days later she found out her two friends were not coming home, sending her into a painful battle with depression which lasted about six years.

In an interview today with local radio station Hot 91,  Ms Smith said she believed good had gone out of the tragedy.

"It is a bittersweet day. 10 years ago my life completely changed,'' she said.

"I feel like I'm the luckiest person alive.''

She said that terrible day became a catalyst for her becoming a better, stronger person.

"I'm a big believer in that everything does happen for a reason.

"Nothing is a mistake in this life.''

"... because of that belief I have been able to have the strength to keep going on and doing what I do.''

The Queenslander, who recently featured on a 60 Minutes where she was reunited with her rescuer, now gives motivational talks, inspiring others to rise above what life throws at them.

She admits for herself, the journey is not over yet.

"I feel like it has been a really, really long time (since the bombings).

"It's been a long journey and it's not over yet.

"We don't get over these sorts of things but we do get on with it.''

She said she hoped she could help others to go on to be 'bigger, better and stronger' than what the bombers had thrown at them.

Ms Smith said it had been particularly hard to lose her best friend of nine years.

"She was the kind of friend you told all your deepest darkest secrets to.''

"She was like my right arm.''

"To have lost both of them, it's a difficult question to answer why I'm here and they are not here.

"I will never be able to reconcile that.''

Miss Smith has written a book about her ordeal, Soul Survivor, which she launched in Mooloolaba on Thursday night. Proceeds went to the Peter Hughes Burn Foundation.

Topics:  bali bombing



How to do Eat Street the right way

EVERYTHING you need to know to get the most out of your Eat Street experience and to avoid a food coma when you’re only one stall deep.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Science Festival seriously awesome

Don't miss the World Science Festival Brisbane!

CALLING everyone who wants to see something totally cool.

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Top five things to experience this summer in Brisbane

Tangalooma is amazing if you're keen for a dive, kayak or swim.

THIS summer get out and explore your capital city.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Community cervix announcement: New test will save lives

The new cervical screening test will be available for all Australian women aged 25 to 74 in late 2017.

CANCER Council Queensland has backed new cervical cancer screening.

Warwick student given 'herb grinder' as reward

Don't go jumping to conclusions.

A joint decision was made to confiscate the 'cool toy'.

Tony Abbott: Coalition in danger of becoming ‘Labor lite’

If only six members had changed their vote we would still have Tony Abbott as PM.

Abbott says he is disappointed and disillusioned with the government

Local Partners

Killarney tips record turnout for show

Utes, livestock, Lego and sunshine are tipped to attract a record crowd at the Killarney Show.


REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Collegians to kick off footy season next week

Collegians coaches (from left) Deb Scanlan, Garth Miller, Ben Brownlie, Matt Collins (U9 assistant), David Hallman, Kerry Scanlan, Josh Williams, Bob Bell, Craig Frattini and Scott Morton.

Plenty of experience in Collegians coaching ranks

Messing with your head

MIND BLOWN: What could be weirder than the realisation that we have another completely separate brain and nervous system than the one originating in our heads?

Fascinating connection between your gut and your brain

Living End, Grinspoon stars hit stage for American Idiot

GET a sneak peek at Green Day's American Idiot The Musical as we go behind the scenes to meet the stars at a QPAC rehearsal.

Samuel L Jackson dismisses La La Land ahead of Oscars

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a scene from the movie La La Land.

Hollywood actor and Oscars voter says Denzel should win top gong

Live performance of Sci-fi classic to open Science Festival

Qld Symphony Orchestra perform live to 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Festival will host A Live Presentation of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

Reginald VelJohnson, left, and Darius McCrary arrive at the TV Land Awards on Sunday, April 19, 2009 in Universal City, Calif.

Darius McCrary has been accused of child abuse

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Reality TV show gives Maryborough a boost

*WARNING EMBARGOED until 9.15pm Monday January 30* Sean Hollands and Susan Rawlings pictured after their wedding on the TV series Married At First Sight. Supplied by Channel 9.

Maryborough looks good on reality TV show.

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

LOVERS: Grant and Chris have been together for more than three years, and Chris' parents refuse to acknowledge their son's fiance.

Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Ipswich facing housing shortage: Property expert

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!