Gracetown is a hillside, coastal town with panoramic ocean views. The town is located on Cowaramup Bay which faces north, bringing shelter from the strong winds of summer, and making it popular with holidaymakers and surfers.
The day Carroll and Jack took us for a drive through the area the weather god was shining down on us.
The surf was pumping.
But Gracetown has a tragic story in its past. On a day like today, fine and sunny, in September 1996. It was the last day of the school term and Cowaramup and Margaret River Primary schools were enjoying a day of friendly surfing rivalry. Watching the final heat children, parents and teachers were sitting on the beach under the cliff overlooking the Huzzas surf break.
Without any warning at around 6pm more than 2000 tonnes of rock and earth collapsed on them. The horror of that moment will be forever remembered at this spot.
Onlookers dug desperately to save those buried. As news of the tragedy spread they were soon joined by rescue workers, friends and relatives.
Two excavator drivers came to assist the frantic rescue efforts. One risked his life manoeuvring his machine over then down the cliff.
One 10-year-old girl was freed from the rubble 2 hours later and survived.
Sadly 5 adults and 4 children were killed.
For my friend Carroll this place is deep in memories as she was working at the Margaret River Primary as secretary and receptionist and was in the front line of the out pouring of grief.
Life can be so unpredictable, so my friends out in the blogosphere, count your blessings, give your loved ones a hug, and appreciate every moment.