Maroochy lifeguard Ryan Abdy will be missed
RYAN Abdy was always the lifeguard appointed to cover the beach in front of Maroochydore's Seabreeze Caravan Park during the busy summer holiday season.
This week, six months after his death from brain cancer at the age of 40, the champion surfer and surf lifesaver was remembered when with the opening of Beach Access 150, the surf break out front was named Ryan "Abdul" Abdy Beach in his honour.
The former Northshore Boardriders Club and Maroochydore Surf Life Saving Club member was a much-loved waterman who built relationships across the globe with an engaging manner on shore and a graceful style under pressure on even the most challenging waves.
Members of both clubs gathered this week along with Ryan's father, Bob, and brother Drew to celebrate Ryan's recognition at the opening of an asset that will improve water access for lifeguard rescue vehicles.
The project, which has been driven by Ryan's former surf and boardrider club colleague Jason O'Pray since his election to council in 2012, will also provide a valuable access point for teams contesting a string of surf lifesaving competitions stretching through to the national titles in 2016.
Cr O'Pray says the access, whose design guarantees there will be no steep drop-off if the beach erodes, will also be used for the Disabled Surfing Association's first event on the Coast this year.
He said it was appropriate the beach be named after Ryan, a Maroochydore SLSC volunteer and national surfing champion who had actively engaged in environmental stewardship through dune replanting and other projects.
The 5m wide access toes into the dunes and stretches down to the coffee rock.
Lifeguard supervisor Rhys Drury welcomed the access to a concrete ramp so close to the shed where important rescue gear was stored.
"It's now so much easier and quicker for lifeguards to get our gear into the water," he said.
The upgrade, which cost $230,000, includes three showers, three foot washes, sandstone seating, bike racks and rubbish bins. Beach Access 150 is located on the corner of Alexandra Pde and Melrose Pde, between Pierce Park and Maroochy Beach Caravan Park.