Honors for Army veteran and father-of-five Paul Miller

Paul Miller and partner Amanda Kaplan.

Paul Miller and partner Amanda Kaplan.

In a post published on behalf of Kaplan by veteran group Operation Unity South Australia, she paid tribute to “my beloved Paul Miller”.

The Post said Miller walked the Kokoda Track with another family member last week, but collapsed shortly after beginning the walk.

“Unfortunately, on the second day, Paul had an alleged heart attack. Despite all assistance and CPR efforts, Paul was airlifted from the plane and confirmed to have died upon arrival at the hospital,” Kaplan said.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed the death and is providing consular assistance to the man’s family.

Kaplan explained through the Operation Unity SA post that more information would follow when Miller is released and returns home from Papua New Guinea.

“He went out with a bang — he was doing something he’s always wanted to do … Kokoda.”

Paul Miller with daughters Sarah and Hayley and son Aaron at Anzac Day 2019.

Paul Miller with daughters Sarah and Hayley and son Aaron at Anzac Day 2019.

In a separate post on Facebook, Miller’s daughter Sarah wrote that she woke up to her “whole world falling apart” when she heard the news that her father had died.

“I still don’t want to believe it. I still want to believe that dad will call me and tell me everything will be fine,” she wrote.

“My best friend, my hero, my security blanket is gone but I know his memories will live on forever and I will always meet people who loved and knew him.”

Kokoda Track Authority chief executive Julius Wargirai said his agency had been contacted by organizers of the tour group and said a man had collapsed on the walk.

“The group then continued on the route,” he said.

The agency confirmed the man’s death and said local police were investigating.

The Kokoda Track is the site of a World War II battle between Japanese and Australian forces, traveling 96 kilometers through the Owen Stanley Range in Papua New Guinea.

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Justin Scaccy

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