Tributes are flowing for a 25-year-old man after he was buried alive underneath 1.5m of sand at Bribie Island and is now fighting for life in hospital.
Josh Taylor, 25, was without a pulse for 45 minutes after fifteen men finally pulled him free from the sand pit into which he had fallen head first on Saturday afternoon.
His friends and family took turns providing CPR until he was flown to Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane.
He remains in a critical but stable condition as of Tuesday morning.
Messages of support have been shared on social media, hoping for the young man’s recovery as he enters his third day in intensive care.
“Prayers out to you and the family, you’re gonna get through this my man,” one friend wrote to Facebook.
“Thoughts are with you Joshy,” another wrote.
Wests Brisbane Junior Rugby League Club shared a message from the Taylor family with their members asking for prayers to help Josh “pull through”.
“I have very sad news that the man who was buried at Bribie is Squizzy’s son Josh,” the message said.
“We are all devastated and praying for him.”
A witness who helped rescue Mr Taylor was told the group had dug the sand pit to cook a pig, similar to the traditional Maori cooking style of hangi.
“He stood up off the chair, the sand had given away a little bit underneath him,” Nathan told 7 News on Sunday night.
“He stumbled back. He’d put his arms out to obviously break the fall. He’s continued going down and knocked sand as he’s put his arms out.”
Nathan was leaving the beach with his family when a group of men ran over yelling for help to rescue their friend from under the sand.
When he arrived at the scene, Mr Taylor’s family and friends were desperately digging to get him out.
“I realised someone was head first in a hole and I was just digging, digging, digging,” he said.
“When I first went up to the hole, I couldn’t even see his foot. That’s how deep it was.”
He told NCA NewsWire there were more than 15 people digging in the sand to get the man out before paramedics and rangers arrived.
“All of his family were screaming at us, telling us to help, telling us to get rope so we could pull him out. It was pretty gruesome,” Nathan said.
“There were like 15 men on the rope pulling and he did not budge.”
After some time of pulling and digging, Mr Taylor finally burst through the surface of the sand, but the force of being pulled out caused him further injury, Nathan said.
“It was pretty gnarly when he popped out. I threw up,” he said.
“He broke. The suction, the force of everyone pulling.”
When they got him out, Mr Taylor did not have a pulse and rangers began performing CPR.
Rangers in the area also applied a defibrillator before paramedics arrived.
It’s understood it was 45 minutes before the man’s pulse returned.
Originally published as Friends speak out after Josh Taylor, 25, buried alive beneath sand at Bribie Beach