Hopes fade for live export vet

Missing live export vet Lukas Orda well regarded by Mount Isa community

News
Emma and Lukas Orda, with their son Theo. Photo: Winni and Mini Photography.

Emma and Lukas Orda, with their son Theo. Photo: Winni and Mini Photography.

Aa

"It is just tragic, he just started in that job, he was working on the Gold Coast and then he took that position so he'd done one or maybe two trips."

Aa

THE young father missing from a livestock vessel which hit rough weather in the East China Sea is well regarded in the Mount Isa community.

Lukas Orda, 25, is one of two Australians missing from the Gulf Livestock 1, which capsized on Wednesday with 43 crew and almost 6000 head of cattle on board.

Mr Orda moved with his family from Germany to Mount Isa when he was a teen and attended Good Shepherd Catholic College.

His parents still live in the town, where his father Ulrich is a director of accident and emergency at the Mount Isa Hospital. His mother Sabine works there also.

Mr Orda went on to study veterinary science at James Cook University in Townsville and he completed his studies in 2016.

Mount Isa parish priest Father Mick Lowcock said the family is highly regarded in the community.

"They came to Mount Isa from Germany when he started high school, he completed year 12 here and went to JCU," Fr Lowcock said.

"He came back and did work experience on properties around the place.

"They are very well known."

Fr Lowcock said Mr Orda had just started working on live export vessels and had only done one or two trips.

"It is just tragic, he just started in that job, he was working on the Gold Coast and then he took that position so he'd done one or maybe two trips.

"It is just tragic, he has a wife and little child."

Fr Lowcock said he had spoken with the family last night, who were in Townsville with Mr Orda's sister Kathrin, who is studying medicine at JCU.

"They are obviously very sad, the parents came out here to give the children good opportunities in Australia.

"He was always an outgoing child, he would come up and say G'day."

Fr Lowcock said the last interaction he had with Mr Orda was just before he left for Napier, bound for China, when he posted on social media congratulating the priest on a recent award.

"That's the type of person he was."

Traeger MP Robbie Katter said Mr Orda was an outstanding student in Mount Isa and said his thoughts were with his family.

"Lukas is a very high-achieving and well-regarded person, and he was an excellent student during his time growing up in Mount Isa," Mr Katter said.

"I am mindful of respecting the position his family and loved ones are in right now.

"We are all praying and hoping for good news."

A James Cook University spokesman confirmed that Mr Orda had completed his veterinary science studies in 2016.

"Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time," a JCU spokesman said.

Aa

From the front page

Sponsored by