Unfortunately Seara was killed in a quad bike accident at the young age of 35, leaving her 9 year-old son Declan without a mum.
Seara started her sea-going career in 1992 as a deckhand on a fishing trawler in the Gulf of Carpentaria.
At the age of 32 she was a single-mum working aboard the tugs at Weipa, when she went to the local General Practitioner after she discovered a couple of lumps in her right breast.
She did not have a family history of cancer, so it took a while before she received the correct diagnosis.
More than a year was spent treating the disease, she had both of her breasts removed and had to under chemotherapy and radiation but she endured.
Her story is an incredible one of resilience and strength and it is with great sadness she has been taken away.
Vale Seara Olsen, your determination and character was an inspiration for all that worked alongside you.
Seara’s funeral is on Friday 23rd August @ 1000 hours
At Cairns Crematorium Funeral Home, Fosters Road, Cairns
There has been discussions amongst many of the delegates and rank and file employed by Svitzer regarding anything we could do to assist the family in their sad times. Much of the discussion was around young Declan who at the age of 9 faces childhood without a mum as well as all the other challenges life will throw at him. He will be raised by his grandparents who will have to support Declan through these years.
Due to Seara’s battle with breast cancer it is believed Seara had no choice but to access her super to assist paying for all the treatment that she required and there is not a lot left in there to assist Declan’s grandparents in raising young Declan. THIS IS WHERE WE CAN HELP. We are asking the towage industry (members, employees in other unions and employers) to rally behind the family and show we are here to support them.
In discussions with delegates and rank and file we have considered how we might be able to assist the family and Declan in their hour of need and it has been decided to set up a fund to help raise Declan and pay for his education.
We are asking our members in all ports and in all towage companies to donate a day’s wage to the fund.
I have personally been in discussions with Svitzer and they have confirmed that they will assist by making a sizable contribution to the fund and will also make arrangements for amounts to be deducted off leave balances or out of wages if notified. I will also be approaching other towage companies to seek support.
Members working for other towage companies should discuss how best to make any contributions to the fund with their respective branch officials.
Branches can also donate to the fund if they so wish.
Comrades we can’t bring Seara back and we can’t ease the grief that young Declan will be experiencing but we can show we care and we can do something about securing his future. I ask that every MUA member in the Towage industry support this initiative and get behind securing this young lads future and supporting Seara’s family.
The trust fund account for any donations are: Mining Maritime and Power Credit Union - Olsen Trust Fund - BSB 802 884 4626 (S3), "Olsen" as reference.