The family of a teenager who died at Adelaide’s Stereosonic music festival has paid tribute to a “fun-loving young man whose life had been cut so tragically short”.
In a statement, the family of 19-year-old Stefan Woodward urged for change at festivals, including greater access to first aid and free water, to ensure no other family endures the same heartache.
Mr Woodward died on Saturday from a suspected drug overdose at the Adelaide leg of the festival.
Two others remain in critical condition after consuming drugs at the festival.
The same day, police released images of red and orange pills stamped with dollar symbols, which were found on Mr Woodward.
“Our family is devastated by our loss and we would do anything to have our son and brother back,” Mr Woodward’s mother, two brothers and stepfather said in a statement.
“Stefan finished a traffic management training course on Friday and was excited about getting an apprenticeship.
“I keep asking what could have stopped me from losing my son, and my other two sons from losing their darling brother.”
Mr Woodward worked at a supermarket while completing Year 13 at Seaton High School, in Seaton, South Australia.
He was also heavily involved in the Woodville Lacrosse Club.
The club paid tribute to Mr Woodward, who played for the division one team, describing him as “a sharp-shooting left-handed attackman”.
Mr Woodward’s family has urged friends to look out for each other and for event organisers to be better prepared with first aid in the future.
“More than anything I want something good to come of this tragedy,” the family said.
“I want organisers of events like these to make sure there is enough first aid on offer to make sure that no-one gets turned away, and no-one feels they need to wait.
“I want friends to look after each other and make sure it’s never considered weak to ask for help.
“I want authorities to make sure kids are kept safe with free water.
“And I want young boys and girls like Stefan to never be too scared to ask for help.
“Mostly, I never want another family to go through what we are going through next now.”
Independent senator Nick Xenophon has called for a coronial inquest into Mr Woodward’s death.
The death comes a week after 25-year-old Sylvia Choi died at the Sydney Stereosonic festival of a suspected overdose.
Topics: drugs-and-substance-abuse, dance-music, carnivals-and-festivals, death, adelaide-5000