Tributes flow for one punch victim

Family and friends have paid tribute to a 'larger than life' surfer and former Gold Coast tradie who died in hospital after a one punch attack.

It is understood that Brett Thomson, 32, has passed away in hospital overnight.

Surf-loving Brett 'Tomo' Thomson has been in a critical condition since Saturday after he was allegedly struck during a row outside a Cairns Bar.

Friends of Brett Thomson describe him as loved and easy going. PICTURE: SUPPLIED
Friends of Brett Thomson describe him as loved and easy going. PICTURE: SUPPLIED


Police say an altercation broke out between two groups outside the bar about 10.40pm

The 32-year-old, believed to have hit his head on the ground, is understood to have suffered extreme brain damage and lost neurological control of his body.

Mr Thomson, described as popular and easy going by friends, had lived on and off on the Gold Coast for the past 30 years, chasing a love of surfing.

Brett's aunty Kim Thomson said a roofing job on the Gold Coast suited him down to the ground due to his passion for the outdoors.

"He loved his job," she said.

"He was just full of life, it's not good to see him so still. He has many friends there on the Gold Coast."

Mr Thomson had moved back to Cairns earlier this year, she said.

"He shared his love of Cairns and the surf on the Coast," Ms Thomson said.

"He moved back for work on the Islands of Cairns but every break he would be out on the reef spear fishing and then back on the Coast to get his surfing kick.

Brett Thomson was hospitalised Saturday evening after he was stuck outside of a Cairns pub. PICTURE: SUPPLIED
Brett Thomson was hospitalised Saturday evening after he was stuck outside of a Cairns pub. PICTURE: SUPPLIED

Ms Thomson who spoke with the Bulletin from his Cairns hospital bedside yestersday said the situation was incredibly unfair.

"It is just so beautiful to see how many people that have visited him here in the ICU," she said.

"It is so sad seeing my sister's heart breaking and not seeing Brett smile and hear his laugh. "He would be so overwhelmed with everyone fussing over him. He (was) surrounded with friends and family."

Cairns 20-year-old Timothy John England, facing a charge of grievous bodily harm, was released on bail yesterday. Magistrate Terry Browne ordered him to report to police three times a week and not leave Queensland.

Brett Thomson loved the outdoors. PICTURE: SUPPLIED
Brett Thomson loved the outdoors. PICTURE: SUPPLIED

Friends have taken to social media to pay their tributes to Brett.

"I'm speechless, this world is a cruel place sometimes. It's always the good ones taken too (sic) soon! We love you Brett," one friend said.

Another friend said, "Absolutely devastating, will miss you calling in for beers and laughs mate. Thoughts are with your family. Love ya mate."

"Always had that great smile and just enjoyed life like it should be lived. Was an honour to have known you Tommo," one male friend said.

A Go Fund Me page has been set up named 'Brett Thomson - Forever Young Fund', established by Brett's friend Damon Goodwin.

Mr Goodwin said Brett had a "larger than life live-for-the-moment personality.

It had raised $11,550 of a $50,000 target in 24 hours.

The incident follows a one-punch attack on the Gold Coast last week which left 34-year-old Liam McNeilly in intensive care.

Mr McNeilly who was visiting the Gold Coast as part of a fishing trip remains in a coma.

A Gofundme page for the family of alleged assault victim Brett Thomson is starting to gather funds for his family. PICTURE: SCREENSHOT
A Gofundme page for the family of alleged assault victim Brett Thomson is starting to gather funds for his family. PICTURE: SCREENSHOT