How an Esky saved pro wrestler’s life after whale takedown
Two men who clung to a floating Esky after their boat sank 30 kilometres off Mooloolaba on Sunday have revealed their incredible survival story.
Budding pro wrestler Eastyn Collie, 20, and his father-in-law, Daniel Mallon, 40, were enjoying their first fishing trip together in Mr Mallon's new boat when they are believed to have struck a whale about 2pm.
Mr Collie has trained with a number of WWE legends in the hope of one day wrestling in the United States full-time.
The pair spoke exclusively to The Courier-Mail about how their vessel sank within a matter of minutes, leaving them with only an Esky to cling to and an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon.
They then held on for their lives for more than two hours before the coast guard arrived.
"Two hours felt like forever, especially when you don't think you're going to be found," Mr Collie exclusively told The Courier-Mail.
"(I thought) We're screwed, we're going to die out here. We're going to be here forever."
Mr Collie wrestles shows across the Sunshine Coast and recently trained with former WWE Superstars in the United States in the hope of getting a professional contract.
Mr Collie - who is newly engaged with a baby on the way with his fiancee Amber Mallon - can now officially add shipwreck survivor to his persona.
He said he feared he may never get to meet his child.
"We've got a baby on the way as well and when you go down you think, am I ever going to see my child," he said.
"You kind of just squeeze the life out of them (your loved ones) because you never think you're going to see them again."
The pair lost thousands of dollars worth of equipment, including a $3000 fish finder, wallets, phones, car keys and an engagement ring that Ms Mallon bought Mr Collie.
But Mr Mallon said nothing matters except being able to see those you love again.
"The big things in life are more important," he said.
The pair have encouraged others to purchase an EPIRB with a GPS device in it and believe they would have drowned had they not had one.