Family’s heartache: ‘We don’t know how he died’


NATHAN Turner's father, Rodney, has revealed emotional new details about his son's death.

Mr Turner died last week with the State Government initially reporting it was a result of COVID-19 infection.

But an autopsy revealed the 30-year-old never had the virus.

In a lengthy statement, Nathan's father said he has not received any official cause of death from the coroner and said he understands Queensland Health's reaction to his son's death.

"We do not have a cause of death and have been told by the Coroner's office that due to his complicated medical history and the volume of tests being carried out, this may take quite some time to be finalised," Rodney said.


Nathan Turner died suddenly last week.
Nathan Turner died suddenly last week.


"However, (Monday) afternoon, the Coroner's office did contact ourselves and Simone personally. After further blood tests and lung tests conducted in the autopsy process so far, they can tell us that they have not found any evidence that Nathan died from or with COVID-19.

"Nathan was found by Simone, deceased at his home late last Tuesday afternoon. COVID-19 testing swabs were taken from Nathan after his death in his home. The first showing positive to the virus and the second showing negative.

"So, I completely understand the reaction of QLD Health to this situation. As a matter of public interest they had to take precautionary action based on the evidence they had before them.

"What I don't understand is how a false positive came about in the first place."

Rodney said his family and Mr Turner's fiance Simone had been bombarded with scrutiny during a time of "unbelievable loss".


Mr Turner’s family still don’t know how he died.
Mr Turner’s family still don’t know how he died.


Rodney said Simone had been self-isolating and Mr Turner had "symptoms of a cold - something not uncommon for Nathan".

"But he had not displayed any other symptoms of COVID-19," Rodney said.

"No, he did not have cancer.

"Yes, he did have a workplace, single vehicle, truck driving accident in November last year and has not worked since.

"No, he was not on Work Cover - he was considered ineligible because Work Cover deemed this accident to be "medically related" not "work related".

"Yes, Simone and her family have been forced to isolate because of the incorrect testing outcome. But, neither Simone nor her family showed symptoms of COVID-19 and were all tested negative - Simone three times."

Simone was not suffering symptoms of COVID-19 and was not forced to isolate in Rockhampton Hospital, Rodney said.

She isolated at home instead.


Mr Turner was found in his Blackwater home.
Mr Turner was found in his Blackwater home.


"Yes, a number of Nathan and Simone's friends and Simone's work colleagues were tested for the virus. All negative, but still forced to isolate," he said.

Rodney said he could only imagine what the Rockhampton nurse, who was falsely accused of infecting Mr Turner, was going through.

"I feel for the nurse in Rockhampton, falsely accused of transmitting the virus to Blackwater," Rodney said.

"None of us know her and I'm sure she and Nathan never knew each other either. But given the media experience we have had, I can only imagine how she must feel right now.

"I feel for Simone's employer and co-workers at the Blackwater bakery, who have all suffered trauma and lost income due to a false test.

"I feel for the whole town of Blackwater who have been subjected to unnecessary testing and concerns for their health as a result of this mistake."

Rodney thanked the Blackwater community for their support and asked for privacy.

"I understand the potential risk of a communicable disease required immediate action from QLD Health and the public needed to be informed," Rodney said.

"But now, that risk has passed - or more to the point, never existed in the first place. This is no longer a story of public concern.

"It is now time to leave Nathan's fiance, his family and friends, alone to grieve in private."

Originally published as Family's heartache: 'We don't know how he died'

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