The shattered wives of two men who drowned on Noosa's North Shore on Saturday have told of their husbands' bravery as they frantically tried to save their sons.

Richard Catbagan, 37, from Dalby, and Denny Jade Caballa, 37, from Kingaroy, dived into the surf at Teewah Beach after three of their kids ran into trouble in deceptively dangerous waters.

Two of the kids who made it out safely were Richard's, while Denny's son Tyghan, 9, was taken to hospital.

Speaking to The Courier-Mail, wives Cherry Apple Caballa and Sheri Lyn Catbagan described their husbands as "heroes".

"Richard was always thinking of other people," Sheri said.

"He (was) quiet, jolly, always smiling. He (was) so nice," she said.

Richard Catbagan and Denny Jade Caballa. Picture: Facebook/Supplied
Richard Catbagan and Denny Jade Caballa. Picture: Facebook/Supplied

Sheri said it wasn't Richard's first time to run into the surf to help others, with her husband of 12 years and the father of three running into the surf to save an injured girl nine years ago on the Gold Coast.

Denny's wife of 16 years Cherry Apple described her husband as "brave".

"He was a very proud father. He was a very responsible man," she said.

"We loved him, we miss him, and we're very proud of him. He's our hero."

Cherry Apple said her son Tyghan had now been discharged from hospital after their ordeal on Noosa's North Shore.

"I'm still shocked," she said.

"I couldn't sleep last night."

Nine-year-old Tyghan, second from right, was taken to hospital.
Nine-year-old Tyghan, second from right, was taken to hospital.

Another person who rushed to the rescue of the kids - friend Xeino Sacremento - said the tragedy at Teewah began as a "quick holiday".

Xeino described the waters as deceptive as he rushed out with the others to help the kids.

"It was just below knee level, and suddenly when this wave caught us … we couldn't feel the ground anymore," he said.

"Raymond and me were also caught by the rip, we were also drowning, but we were lucky. We got out of the water."

 

The scene of the tragedy at Teewah. Picture: 7News
The scene of the tragedy at Teewah. Picture: 7News

 

Xeino said Richard and Denny enjoyed camping and had toured the state doing what they loved.

He said both men were heroic in the way they acted on Saturday.

"It doesn't matter if it's their sons or someone else's, they're definitely going to jump in."

 

Nine-year-old Tyghan was taken to hospital but has since been discharged. Picture 7News
Nine-year-old Tyghan was taken to hospital but has since been discharged. Picture 7News

 

 

 

 

Originally published as 'Our heroes': Shattered wives' tribute after tragic drownings


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