The makeshift shrine marking the spot where Port Lincoln man Damien Little drove off the edge of a wharf, killing himself and his two young sons, will remain in place for the foreseeable future.
As the Eyre Peninsula community continues to grieve, Flinders Ports, which operates the wharf, says it has moved the hundreds of flowers, teddy bears and other items back from the edge of the water at the request of relatives but has no immediate plans to remove the shrine altogether.
Early on Monday, Mr Little drove his car off the wharf and into 30 metres of water along with 10-month-old Hunter and four-year-old Koda.
His family has since revealed the 34-year-old had suffered from mental health issues over the past three years.
“We had noticed a change,” his mother Sue told the Adelaide Advertiser.
“We tried to help him, we all did. But you can’t help somebody who can’t help himself.”
The revelations of Mr Little’s troubled life came as community members said he was respected and well liked.
“It’s just a shocking thing to have happen out of the blue and for no reason that we knew of,” Wheatsheaf Hotel owner Peter Watherston said.
“He and his brother used to pop out for a beer.”
South Australian commissioner for victims’ rights Michael O’Connell urged people not to rush to blame Mr Little, even those who found murder by a parent to be among the “cruellest of tragedies”.
“We do not know the reasons Damien did what he appears to have done and speculating helps neither the family nor the people of Port Lincoln,” he said.
Mr Little’s parents and other relatives visited the wharf on Tuesday as police released two family photos that appeared to show a happy couple and their children.
In one, Mr Little and his wife Melissa are sitting on a beach with their two smiling young boys resting in their laps.
* Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78