The body Perth photographer, Matt Dwyer, has been found by rescue teams at Bluff Knoll in WA, after he was reported missing on Wednesday, October 2.
The former Perth Voice and Fremantle Herald photographer, also known for his photos of birds and animals, failed to return home from a photography trip to the Stirling Ranges, in the Great Southern region of Western Australia.
The 51-year-olds body was found by SES crews at the base of the main bluff, in the vicinity of where he was last seen, following a widescale overnight search involving police helicopters, drones and an AMSA Challenger Search and Rescue Jet.
‘Obviously it’s not the outcome that we were hoping for, but nonetheless it’s still an outcome that brings closure to the family, and it certainly provides that certainty to them, they’re not going to continue to wonder if we couldn’t find someone actually on the mountain itself,’ said WA Acting Superintendent, Alex Ryan, who also flagged a coronial investigation into the circumstances of the death.
While the coronial investigation will determine the exact cause of death, his family informed friends on Facebook that Matt tragically fell from a cliff face.
Matt was a professional photographer for 30 years, having arrived in Western Australia in 1974. As well as working weddings and editorial, Matt spent plenty of time hiking and shooting out in the bush, including at Bluff Knoll. His passing is a reminder for everyone to take care when shooting in remote locations, even when they’re familiar with the area.
His former colleague and friend, Fremantle Herald journalist David Bell, remembers Matt as a gentle and warm person.
‘(He was) …definitely a fantastic photographer of humans and animals, as good as he was with a camera he was even better with people,’ David said. ‘He’d come along to meetings where I’d interview people and he was there to take the photos but sometimes he’d come up with better questions than I would. Very fair to say he’s beloved.’
His friend Kate, who asked to only use her first name, told The Age that Matt was a very interesting and creative man.
‘He was always doing new things and thinking about new things. He liked to go off in his van and go on adventures and take amazing photographs. He always kind of had a sparkle in his eye about something he was really interested in, he followed his passions.’
Matt leaves behind three children. Anyone who wishes to touch base with the Dwyer family can find the e-mail of Matt’s brother, Toby, on Facebook.