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The incredible story behind this monster fish

Spear fisher Noel Tregea about 50 years ago, pictured with some of his monster catches off the Keppels.
Spear fisher Noel Tregea about 50 years ago, pictured with some of his monster catches off the Keppels.

NO wetsuit; just shorts, a T-shirt and spear in hand.

That's the old-school way Rockhampton man Noel Tregea and his brothers would snag monster fish around the Keppels.

Daughter Deb Weisse shared a photo taken of her father 50 years ago, proudly holding up a man-sized groper caught off the Capricorn Coast.

It came as a photo sent shockwaves across social media of Whitsundays angler Sam Lacy, shadowed by his 360kg catch.

 

Local lads Sam Lacy with an 800lb black marlin landed off Cairns with Sea Fever Sportfishing. The fish unfortunately died during the fight.
Local lads Sam Lacy with an 800lb black marlin landed off Cairns with Sea Fever Sportfishing. The fish unfortunately died during the fight.

 

LEFT: Local lads Sam Lacy, Sam Sharpen and Matt Ahern had an epic run   out of Cairns this week.   All catches were released, except an 800lb whopper .
LEFT: Local lads Sam Lacy, Sam Sharpen and Matt Ahern had an epic run out of Cairns this week. All catches were released, except an 800lb whopper .

But there's more to Noel's catch than photos and bragging rights.

"They would feed their families on the caught fish and give away to needy friends and organisations the excess as what happened with this monster groper to Neerkol orphanage," Deb told of the story behind the picture.

"They used to just have a rope attached to them and the boat to get back without trouble.

"The family is still big into fishing these days and continue the legacy."

 

Spear fisher Noel Tregea about 50 years ago, pictured with some of his monster catches off the Keppels.
Spear fisher Noel Tregea about 50 years ago, pictured with some of his monster catches off the Keppels.

The Rockhampton local isn't one to cast a line herself, but said her father's two nephews were keen fishermen.

Though it was his love and passion, Noel's days in the ocean came to a dramatic end.

"He actually was swept away from the boat once and swam to South Keppel," Deb said.

"He told me he had two small children and didn't want to risk it any more after that."

Deb lost her father in 2009 and came upon this photo recently in her mother's archives.

"The feeling of utter respect for him when I showed my 9-year-old daughter this picture was indescribable," she said.

"For me he was the epitome of a man."



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