April Progress Dispatch
Photography and Text By Michael O’Shea  © All rights reserved.

Michael O'Shea was born Jan 12th, 1975 in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, Australia. Kalgoorlie is a mining town, with the richest square mile of gold in the world.
 
Michael's Father was killed when he was six months of age. He has two older brothers, Darren and Adrian.
 
Michael's father, Michael John O'Shea, was a Vietnam Veteran. After his passing, the boys came under the wing of Legacy. They spent from the age of 9 - 16 at the annual camps held by retired Michael O’Shea Photography © Michael O’Shea service men and SAS. These camps were filled with excitement and adventure. Michael's stepfather Don, also used to take them on camping trips in the four wheel drive to remote areas and in the bush gold detecting. Fishing trips to the south coast out of Esperance were also a favorite activity. They all grew up with plenty of adventurous outdoor activities and have chosen careers in that field.
 
Darren, Adrian and Michael are all very talented with music as well, play the guitar and have in the past played in bands. Michael, can also give you a tune on the didgeridoo as well, which is very hard to play!
 
Michael attended school in Kalgoorlie at St. Mary's Primary school. He finished his education at Eastern Goldfields Senior High School and John Paul College.
 
During their younger years, Michael and his brother Adrian, gave us many a heart attack with their wild and adventurous spirits: collecting snakes, going off exploring on their own and absailing in the open cuts in the region without the proper safety equipment or knowledge at the time. Who knows what other stories I've never heard about!
 
Parachuting is another sport that Michael took up and enjoyed. He participated in Outward Bound Survival Course at the age of 16 and by the age of 20 was out backpacking around the world. He never got to the USA, but some of the countries he visited were Asia, being Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia, India, England and some of Europe. He worked in a kayaking business in Malaysia, hence the interest in starting his own outdoor Adventure business with kayaking and absailing in Laos.
 
Michael has a wonderful sense of humor and great personality. He mixes as well with the elderly as with his own age group and children. He has given books, pencils etc. to the under privileged in a lot of countries in order to help. When home, he spends quite a lot of time with his Grandparents, Frank and Daphne Kennedy.
 
He just loves to sit and hear my father's stories of times gone by. And he does have many to tell. He had a very colorful life. All through Michael's life, he has visited and spent a lot of time with his Grandparents. Unfortunately his Grandfather on his father's side died before we even married, and his other grandmother Roma O'Shea, whom has now passed away, lived some 375 miles away. He only managed to see them on school holidays and didn't have the chance to get as close as my parents did.
 
We are all extremely proud of Michael and his challenge, but will of course all be breathing a huge sigh of relief when it is all finished. It is then the celebrations will really start.
 
Michael was engaged in January this year, to Katunyuta Iampinyo (Yuta), from Thailand, and they will be married back here in Kalgoorlie shortly after he completes his descent of the Mekong River. Yuta manages one of Laos leading resorts Parkview Executive Suites in Vientiane, Lao and her family has an exporting business in Thailand.

Click Here For The Complete Mekong Descent Index



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