.....click play above for the song of the day....."courage"
......Cade was a friend of mine who I met in Bali.....great surfer, funny, wild, and warm........I just read this and I am sharing it with you all now......
Troubled soul ... Cade Dallas with ex-wife Veny Amelia in Bali in 2010.
In his drug- and alcohol-fuelled death – as in his fast life – Aussie surfer Cade Dallas is causing a stir. Michael Bachelard and Mark Whittaker report.
Andy Campbell lived the dream. In the late '90s and early 2000s, surf clothing company Billabong would fly the Tasmanian to wherever in the world the big waves were. He'd surf, party, promote his sponsor, then move on to the next wall of water. By 2002, though, he'd retired to Bali where, one typically sultry morning, he paddled out towards the thundering surf break at Uluwatu, off the holiday island's southernmost peninsula, Bukit. Approaching the break, he could barely believe what he was seeing.
"It was a big day - 10, 12 feet," Campbell recalls. "It was heavy. Gnarly. Not many people surf it [at that size]. But there was a guy out there I didn't recognise. He took off on a huge wave and surfed it to perfection. I'd surfed with the best in the world, and this guy was one of the best I'd seen ... Old-style, hard-core. Not out there doing tricks. Serious. The stuff that takes years to master."
Colourful characters … Cade Dallas and Veny Amelia in Bali on their wedding day in 2002.
The guy was Cade Dallas, a tall, big-boned, redheaded Aussie who had earned his stripes on one of the best and most unwelcoming surf breaks on the NSW coast, Sandon Point at Bulli, north of Wollongong. He and Campbell became mates. For years they'd meet on the waves, as each man built his life and business in Bali. Then, at 3pm on May 19 last year, Dallas died suddenly after a two-week drug and alcohol binge. No autopsy was conducted, no cause of death appears on any document, and the people who drank with him are not talking. He was cremated shortly after his death.
The financial and personal mess Cade Dallas left behind has led to an acrimonious court case spanning Indonesia and Australia over a fortune estimated by one antagonist - Dallas's mother - at $300,000, and another - his former wife - at $30 million. Caught up in it are Dallas's two sons from two different women and the future of one of Bali's most successful high-street fashion chains, Somewhere.
The life and death of Cade Dallas is also a story of how one man's demons, in the end, came to own him - of how someone enjoying the idyll of living free in paradise eventually succumbed to the pressures of business and the depredations of drugs, alcohol and a mental illness they caused.
Mother of all disputes … Kerrie Dallas. Photo: Fairfaxsyndication.com
Cade Dallas grew up in a waterfront fibro,right across the road from Sandon Point beach. His father, Greg, was part of the hard-core '70s surfing crew that gave the point its fearsome reputation: they didn't want to know you if you weren't a "local local", son-of-a-miner type thing.
"People didn't have much," says Jason Gava, a coalminer and president of the Sandon Point Boardriders Club. "Their break was one thing that they loved and cherished and they didn't like people coming to surf it, especially if they didn't show any respect. Cars were pushed off cliffs. Plenty of fights and stuff like that. It's still a tough neighbourhood, especially the break. We cherish the break and if people come and show respect, they can surf it. But if you come and think you're going to show no respect and act like a dickhead, you'll be treated like one and probably cop a smack in the head for it."
Young Cade had the heritage, but he had to serve his time like all the other grommets. How quickly you graduated to the inside of the break, right out towards the point, depended on how often you surfed and how hard you charged it. "When it gets big, it's a very intimidating wave," says Gava. "It sorts you out. The younger you charge them when it's big, the more respect you're gunna get. And Cade did charge it absolutely at its biggest.
"He was the sort of bloke who when everyone else was driving out of the car park because it was too big, he'd be driving in."
In 1997, Dallas won the club's open competition. Sponsors came knocking and a future as a professional surfer beckoned. But Dallas never kicked on. According to Campbell, what stopped him was the oldest story in the world - his girlfriend fell pregnant, and he decided to do the right thing and stick around. He got a job as a beach inspector at Bulli and Corrimal and dabbled in the rag trade, travelling between Bali and a series of markets in Australia. That first child (whom Good Weekend has chosen not to name) is now 16 and was close to Dallas until his father's death.
But Dallas's choice not to turn pro became an enduring demon. "He used to beat himself up for not pursuing surfing ... it wasn't something he talked about, but in conversations it was underlying," Campbell says. "I think he knew he was a shit-hot surfer and could have gone to the top."
Having made the decision to settle down, though, Dallas proved difficult to domesticate. By 2002 he had split with the boy's mother, Danielle, and developed a reputation as a hard-drinking playboy. When a mutual friend introduced him to an Indonesian woman, Veny Amelia, in a Bali fabric shop that year, the friend warned her, "Don't go out with him, he's a bad boy."
Having just finished a diploma in hotel management and returned from work and study in Singapore, Amelia accepted the advice at face value. But Dallas started texting her and she texted back. "Because I never expected to be close to him," Amelia says now, "I let it flow and I saw he was good, not bad." He was fun, a joker, always smiling. "He also proved he was serious with me."
Dallas stopped drinking, but Amelia had come from a Muslim culture and was not going to jump straight into a Western-style relationship. "If you are serious with me, then come and meet my parents," she said to him. They'd known each other little more than a month when he fronted her parents with his scruffy long hair and asked her father for her hand in marriage.
"My father said, 'You don't play with my daughter.' Cade looked very serious. He said, 'No, I'm serious. I want to marry Veny.' "
Her parents asked her if he was a good man because he looked so rough. She assured them he was. "After that I said, 'Cade, can you cut your hair?' He really loved his hair. But then he cut it when he married me."
More importantly, Dallas, the rough-hewn surfer from Illawarra, converted to Islam so they could marry in Amelia's religion. After the ceremony, Amelia says they got on his motorbike and he whooped it up, yelling to strangers on the Kuta streets, "Hey, I'm married!" and waving his ring finger about.
Dallas and Amelia joined a loose group of people, often in mixed Balinese-Australian relationships, who were "flowing" between the two places. "It was a cool group ... trying not to get pinned down by anything," says one man who spent time in the same scene. They'd spend maybe six months in Indonesia during the Australian winter, buying accessories and clothing, or having it made in the factories that proliferated in Denpasar, then selling them at Bondi, Paddington and Glebe markets in Sydney. Business was good and for Dallas, who spoke Bahasa Indonesian like a native, it seemed to get better the more he did it.
"They were much more successful than we were," recalls one vendor. "He had an eye for figuring out what people wanted to buy. It would just walk off their racks. They had that talent between them."
But other stall holders also noticed Dallas's jealousy and protectiveness. "He wouldn't tolerate Veny talking to us," says one. "He wouldn't let her out on her own. He was very controlling." Amelia says she got to know few of his friends because "when I asked he got angry with me". To see her own friends, she was forced to sneak out when Dallas wasn't there.
Their son, Keanu, was born in 2003, and, when he was aged one, the family moved back to Bali. But the move seemed to trigger a change in Dallas. He started drinking hard and went out most nights. "He start cheating on me with many girls," recalls Amelia.
Friends would visit from Australia and he'd take them out. She'd be at home and he'd stumble in at 3am, or not at all. "So what I did was always look after my son at home. Cade would be away from the house for three or four days and I would wait for him to come back."
In 2006 they divorced but, within months, he was back. He promised he'd clean up his act and try to be a good husband and father. "I was thinking, 'Okay, for our children I try again. And we still love each other,' " recalls Amelia. They married again in the same year. But Dallas didn't improve. He drank more and was also taking shabu - crystal methamphetamine, or ice. And when he drank he changed, often losing control.
"From the time I met him until he died, 95 per cent of the time he was straight, doing his hardest to stay straight," says Campbell. "But life wasn't easy inside Cade. There was forever an internal battle. I wouldn't say when he drank he was aggressive. I'd say he went into psychosis."
Campbell says this was more than just a label; it was a psychiatric illness for which Dallas was diagnosed and being treated. That didn't stop him falling off the wagon, though, and the fall would be spectacular. When he came back down after days or weeks on a binge, he'd fall into depression.
"He'd call me and tell me he hated himself," Campbell recalls.
"He was a big man, look so healthy, is happy making jokes," says Amelia, "but in his heart he was different. He always told me, 'I'm not happy, I'm not happy. I want to die.' He always talking like that."
But as his internal battles raged, Dallas's business boomed. He opened a clothing shop, Flamingo, in 2006 in partnership with his friend and surfing buddy Simon Wright. "They were selling Sydney street fashion to tourists in Bali," Campbell says. "They pioneered it up there and were really good at it."
Campbell, Wright and Dallas would ride the waves in the morning, sharing the meditative calm that surfers rhapsodise about and, "when Dallas was not drinking, he was great", Campbell recalls. But Dallas's relationship with Wright was difficult, and by 2010, the business partnership had ended. Wright will not talk about its acrimonious breakdown, and would prefer to be left out of this story entirely. "We parted company. There was a reason for this. Best to let the dead rest in peace," is all Wright will say.
That same year - according to documents presented by Dallas's mother, Kerrie, in the court case - Dallas divorced Amelia again, though Amelia says she was unaware of it. Meanwhile, Wright set up a rival store, Lost in Paradise, while Dallas established his own company, Somewhere (stand at one of the shops in Seminyak's main street and you can see the other's signpost). Somewhere was a huge success. Dallas opened new stores in Bali, and the business was believed to be turning over up to $100,000 each month.
On and off, however, Dallas's drinking continued and, semi-regularly, he would spiral out of control. He hung out with the Bra Boys - members of the notorious gang from the Sydney beach suburb of Maroubra who were also making inroads into clothing businesses in Bali and Sydney. He bought a big black Ducati motorcycle, which he repeatedly crashed. By the later months of 2010, even as Somewhere was starting to make its mark on Bali's high streets, Dallas ended up in rehab.
"It was an upmarket place called South Pacific in Curl Curl, Sydney," says Dallas's rehab room-mate, Nick, who does not want to be identified by his full name lest his employer finds out about his past. "The therapy program was three weeks, cost $20,000, and I was sharing with two or three other guys in the room. I arrived and there's a guy passed out on the bed. I dropped my suitcase in the other corner, he lifted his head and I looked at his face, and he'd been on a massive one ... it was a month-long bender."
Dallas did not last the whole three weeks in rehab, but it was enough for the pair to bond over their mutual residence in Indonesia, and a love-hate relationship with alcohol. Sober, Nick says, Dallas was magnetic, "a f...ing smart guy, amazing communication skills - just wise. After he left, all these girls were saying he was the most dysfunctional guy they'd ever met but they were still attracted to him. He had a few flings in rehab."
After the day's therapy sessions were over, Dallas would sit in their room and tell Nick how his dad, Greg, had encouraged him to go on the dole when he finished school and just be a surfer. According to Nick, he also disclosed that in his younger days - well before Schapelle Corby and the Bali Nine - he had done mule runs, bringing drugs from South America and Japan into Bali for the lucrative tourist market. "He said, 'I was always able to get away with it because I was running with the Bali mafia.' "
To back up this claim, he showed Nick a small, circular tattoo on the webbing between the thumb and forefinger of his right hand - the mark of Laskar Bali (literally "Bali Army"), the island's most notorious street gang.
Agung Ari, part of the senior leadership group of the gang run by his half-brother Gung Alit, confirms that Dallas was a member. "Cade had a deep sympathy with Laskar Bali and a deep emotional connection ... He is like a Balinese because he had a very strong connection and emotional attachment to everyone here. He was part of the family." Ari laughs at the suggestion, though, that Cade Dallas or Laskar Bali itself was involved in drug trafficking. Amelia, too, says there's no way Dallas was dealing drugs, saying he was a buyer for personal use only, never a seller.
But Nick begs to differ, adding that other things Dallas had said suggested that his drug-dealing days were not all in the past. "He said to me three or four times that his money was all tied up in drugs," Nick says. Dallas also told him that his appearance in rehab in 2010 was related to a falling-out he'd had with the Laskar Bali gang's bosses and a need to flee.
"When he left Bali [to go into rehab] he said he was in trouble. He had to get two of his mates at immigration to smuggle him out," Nick says.
Other good Bali mates refuse to talk about their former friend, but a double life as a drug importer may explain any wealth above and beyond what even a successful clothing chain might earn.
After rehab, Nick kept in contact with Dallas. They met up twice in Jakarta, once for a bender, but another time when Dallas's will power held and he abstained while Nick got smashed.
At other times, Nick would get a call when Dallas fell off the wagon. "He'd ring me from hospital, two or three times when he crashed his bike or had binges, and I said to him, 'F... man, you're on your ninth life.' His financial success was part of his downfall because he had the resources to never stop [drinking and doing drugs]. There's been times I wanted to kick on, but I had to go and work or something. He didn't have that."
In early May 2012, Andy Campbell took a call from Dallas. "He said he'd made the decision that he wanted to end it," Campbell says. "It was hard to hear. He was struggling and really pissed off with himself that he couldn't hack it."
At around the time of that call, Nick, quite coincidentally, started drinking in Sydney. At the end of that first weekend back on the booze, Nick - inspired by a call he'd made to Dallas - flew to Bali on a whim. By the following Saturday, after nine days straight of being drunk, Nick says he "felt disgusting - I had insomnia, I was anxious, depressed. None of my family even knew I was there."
Nick was at a bar, and due to fly home six hours later, when Dallas turned up with another man, "a monster of a Bra Boy". That pair had started a binge of their own. "Cade said, 'You're not flying,' " Nick recalls. "He took my passport off me, he was really wanting me to stay. He was kicking on, and he had a little bag of coke that we all had a line from."
Even Nick couldn't believe Dallas's single-minded focus that night. "It was like he was possessed ... he was like, to the bartender: 'Bring us three beers every five minutes.' "
Neither man knew it, but it was to be their last bender. Later that evening, Dallas's new fiancée, Yanti, showed up and took him home. But the Bra Boy, whose name Nick can't recall, remarked: "I have a feeling I'll be hearing from Cade again tonight."
Nick escaped. He caught his flight back to Sydney. But Dallas did call the Bra Boy and they resumed drinking. About nine days later, Dallas rang. "He said, 'I've been going since I met you. I've crashed my bike again and got beaten up by someone who was 60 - kicked in the head.' "
It was their last conversation. A few days later, Nick received a message from Dallas's email address but written by someone else: "It was spelling out his funeral details."
Nick has never touched alcohol since. That awful final bender, and the way it ended for Dallas, have kept him sober for 15 months.
"The cause of death, we do not know; the mother [did] not want to perform autopsy," says Agus Pribadi of Bali's Antar Bangsa Funeral Service. "The cremation [was] based on the request of the deceased's mother [who] stay in Bali in that time."
Like Dallas himself, the funeral ceremony on May 23 was larger than life. The eulogies for Dallas from his family surprised a few - "hair-raising stuff, stuff not normally said at a funeral", says one attendee. He declined to elaborate. Dallas's ashes were scattered in the sea off Bali. But his story was not to end with his death.
Cade Dallas's legacy has been a legal battle over an unknown amount of money, with the only guide to his wishes being a will, dated Boxing Day 2011, scrawled on a piece of upside-down notepaper, witnessed by a female friend who cannot be located, and garnished with a smiley-face.
Amelia says Dallas had always told her - especially when drunk - that he'd made a will to look after Keanu and his other son. And so, when Dallas's mother, Kerrie, asked Amelia three months after Dallas's death to sign a document giving Kerrie access to his money on behalf of the children, Amelia signed.
However, by the time Kerrie used the document in the Indonesian courts to secure control of all Cade's bank accounts, Amelia had withdrawn her permission. Kerrie, who now lives in Bali, in a rented villa in Seminyak, ignored that, and the Indonesian court gave her access to the accounts. None of Cade's money - however much it might be - has flowed to Keanu.
And so the matter has found its way to the South Australian Supreme Court in Adelaide, where Amelia now lives with Keanu. There, Kerrie Dallas is represented by a black-robed barrister and four solicitors. She argues that Indonesian law prevents her giving the money to the boys until they turn 18, and that it is "unfairly burdensome for her to have to deal with these matters in two separate courts".
It is Amelia's case, though, that seems to have struck a chord in the preliminary arguments - Justice Tom Gray said at one hearing he was "having a lot of difficulty understanding how the children's interests are being protected by [Kerrie Dallas]".
This saga, though, has a long way to run. And as Amelia's sole lawyer, Greg Finlayson, pointed out in a recent hearing as he nodded towards the opposition table of five lawyers, "There's a lot more than $300,000 at stake here."
Mother of Bra Boy Cade Dallas is 'sitting on' a $30 million fortune that should be helping his son, judge says
Veny Dallas, widow of Bra Boy Cade Dallas, outside the Adelaide District Court. Source: News LimitedThe alleged handwritten will by Bra Boy Cade Dallas. Source: News Limited
THE mother of deceased Bra Boys surf gang member Cade Dallas is "sitting on" his $30 million estate rather than providing for his Adelaide-based son, a senior judge says.
Supreme Court Justice Tom Gray today said Kerrie Dallas' attitude toward the future of her grandson, Keanu, was "troubling".
He said he could not understand why Ms Dallas had put $155,000 of her son's estate into a Balinese trust account for Keanu, rather than transferring it to an Australian bank.
"We are dealing here with a child, his sustenance and education," Justice Gray said.
"(Ms Dallas) seems to be taking the view that she can sit on these monies, with her banker, and do nothing until the cows come home."
In March, adelaidenow reported Ms Dallas was being sued by her daughter-in-law, Veny Amelia, on Keanu's behalf.
Ms Amelia asserts that, at the time of his death in May 2012, Cade Dallas had a $30 million estate fuelled by the $100,000 a month turnover of his clothing chain, "Somewhere".
She says he had promised - both verbally and in a handwritten will signed with a smiley face - to fund Keanu's education at an Adelaide private school.
Ms Amelia further asserts Ms Dallas is using the estate to her own ends after being granted administrative powers by the Denpasar District Court.
Today Steven Thomas, for Ms Dallas, asked the court to grant a permanent stay of Ms Amelia's lawsuit.
He said the Supreme Court had no jurisdiction over the matter because his client was no longer an Australian resident.
"The appropriate forum is the court in Bali," he said.
"This (lawsuit) is causing serious and unjustified trouble for my client... it is unfairly burdensome for her to have to deal with these matters in two separate courts."
Mr Thomas said his client had been told, by her Balinese bank, that Indonesian law prevented Keanu from inheriting until he turned 18.
But Justice Gray said the Balinese court documents showed a judge had ordered Ms Dallas to provide for Keanu.
"Your client is preferring the advice of her bank to the orders of an Indonesian court," he said.
"I'm having trouble seeing how the interests of the child are being protected by this application of yours."
Justice Gray reserved his decision on the stay application.
.....todays photo is from Cade's funeral ceremony the locals carrying his coffin.....below...........is Cade, carrying Steve(also deceased) down the 100+ stairs to Uluwatu, with a smile......below...........is Big Jim having a last look at Cade's funeral ceremony......below................Cade's funeral was traditional Balinese style.........below.........this is before the closed the lid and cremated him......and finally Cade in front of to 'ol Buckaroo shop in Hollywood in 2007......