FIFO dad comes home, starts trade business
WHEN Daniel Bevan got home from work today his three-year-old son was waiting for him, swinging on the gate with a grin from ear to ear.
It's a scene most parents working a fly-in-fly-out roster know well.
But this was the last time Chace and his baby brother Koby would have to wait out the days until their dad came home.
Today Mr Bevan, 37, gave up FIFO life, choosing instead to set up a business from his Wurtulla home using his trade skills.
His business, Advanced Edge Protection, will allow him to use his 21 years of experience in fencing and scaffolding to keep roofing tradesmen and women safe while they do their job.
"The dollar's not everything," he said. "You tend to miss out on a lot of things when you're working FIFO."
Mr Bevan said the gas plant he'd been working at, inland from Roma in Central Queensland, had been good to him. It allowed his wife Ali to stay home with their two young kids while he worked, he said.
He's not wasting any time - his work truck is ready and tomorrow he picks up the gear he'll need to start his first job on Monday.
The decision to quit the FIFO life was triggered by Koby's brief but serious illness six months ago, Mr Bevan said.
He was home after a stint at the gas plant when Koby, who was four months old at the time, became violently ill with what was later diagnosed as meningitis, he said.
Mr Bevan and wife Ali took Koby to a doctor who sent the baby home, but he kept getting worse.
"He got sick and got worse and worse, and we rushed him to the hospital," Mr Bevan said.
He said the shock made him and Ali decide to change paths.
"I had to turn around and re-evaluate everything," he said.
"I worked in scaffolding and rigging for 21 years and I thought it was a great fit."
Speaking with the Daily a few hours after his arrival, Mrs Bevan was relieved and excited to have her husband home.
"I'm so happy," she said. "It's going to be great.
"We miss him so much and especially after Koby got so sick - it's so hard for me to be alone when he's away, because I just worry about them getting sick.
"It's hard being in the house on your own."
She said Chace had been listening for his dad's plane all day, and waiting for him at the front of the house.
"The first thing he'll do is hear a plane going overhead and he'll say, 'I think that's Daddy's plane'," Mrs Bevan said.
"Then all morning he'll be waiting at the front for him to come home."
Mr Bevan said it was "sensational" to be back with his family permanently.
He hadn't been to the beach yet - as Chace had a full itinerary for their afternoon set out - but would be heading to Wurtulla beach tomorrow, he said.
To visit Mr Bevan's edge protection business click here.