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Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Milli O'Nair and the stretch of road where the accident happened.
Milli O'Nair's happy life cut horribly short in freak accident
May 12, 2009 - 2:25PM
Milli O'Nair loved fairies, children and her bicycle.
The 41-year-old's horrific death at the hands of a tired young driver last Sunday has left a small northern NSW community mourning the loss of her whimsical charm and peaceful soul.
O'Nair, a non-violent communication coach and laughter yoga teacher, was killed instantly when a hired truck ploughed into the back of her bicycle on a narrow, bridged section of the Pacific Highway a few kilometres north of Byron Bay.
Police say the impact sent her body hurtling over the side of the bridge and into the heavy scrub and railway tracks below.
The driver, an 18-year-old man on his way back to Sydney from the Gold Coast, told investigators he nodded off for a moment and woke when the truck was scraping along the left hand guard rail.
He has not yet been charged.
O'Nair, who left behind a partner, died a kilometre from where she lived, in a residential community devoted to meditation, yoga and sustainable development.
Her neighbour and friend there, Gwen Gould, said the death had rocked the residents of Gondwana Sanctuary.
"You can't imagine it," Ms Gould said.
"We had a gathering last night with her friends and the beautiful stories that came out.
"She was just a person who really worked towards sorting through her life's problems and living it to the full.
"She laughed and kept people on their toes with her honesty."
Ms Gould said she last saw O'Nair with her partner on Friday night.
"I was just going out for the evening to look after my grandchildren and she and her (partner) came past the front my house and we just stood there and had a right happy chat," she said.
O'Nair spent years manning a fairy stall at the local markets before forging a new path as a nonviolent communication coach and teacher.
Friends said she was regularly seen cycling with a pair of fairy wings strapped to her back, flitting between children's parties, where she handed out wands, wings, and fairy crowns.
The 41-year-old refers, in an online business profile, to "childhood trauma" and "violent communication" at high school as formative life experiences.
"This outer conflict and inner struggle, ignited my passion to do it differently," she writes.
"There had to be a way to connect with compassion and I set out to expand on what I knew.
"For over 20 years I delved deep to heal and explored far, to have the tools to make a difference in the world."