Shot adventurer back in Durban

2012-09-28 00:00

THE South African adventurer who survived an attack by two armed bandits in Peru has arrived home in Durban after weeks in a Lima hospital.

Davey du Plessis was critically wounded when he was shot three times with a shotgun in a remote region of the South American country.

He was attempting a journey along the length of the Amazon River and was on one of its main tributaries — the Ucayali near the town of Pucallpa — when disaster struck.

On Sunday, Du Plessis and his mom Robyn Wolff finally landed on South African soil.

Yesterday, Wolff said they were thrilled to be back. “It is so good to be home.”

Du Plessis has been quietly convalescing at her Mount Edgecombe home and the family has decided not to grant any media interviews until they have hired a publicity manager.

Wolff said her son was “mentally 100%” while his body was slowly healing.

She said there were still some aspects of his health that needed monitoring, for instance his heart and jaw, which were damaged by the shotgun blasts and still have pellets lodged in them.

A stent that was put in his neck to treat an aneurism that developed after being struck by pellets had done its job, added Wolff.

Du Plessis still has to consult a local cardiologist and maxillo-facial surgeon to have his wounds further assessed.

Wolff said in the days following the attack on August 25, Du Plessis lost 17 kg. He has since put on seven kilograms.

Du Plessis was looked after in a Lima hospital where the first part of his stay was confined to the intensive care unit.

Doctors told Wolff his recovery was a miracle given that he sustained serious gunshot wounds to various parts of his body and was forced to flee through the night in jungle terrain to get help.

Du Plessis was in South America attempting his voyage across the continent by following the Amazon from source to sea.

He was raising awareness of the environment and was hoping to turn his journey into a documentary.

Wolff, who spent nearly a month with her son in Peru, said her son would tell his story.

“When he’s ready, he will talk. But for now, he is fine and taking it easy,” she said.

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