Matt Wright has been pictured going for a swim with loved ones less than a week after an investigation into the crash that killed his friend was released.
The image showed the Outback Wrangler in the water at Tipperary Station, about 200km south of Darwin, and was posted by his friend to social media platform X on Saturday night.
The photo was shared just days after the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) published their findings into the deadly 2022 crash on Wednesday.
Chris ‘Willow’ Wilson was killed and pilot Sebastian Robinson injured after their helicopter crashed while on an egg hunting missing in West Arnhem land.
The aviation watchdog ruled that the pilot did not refuel the aircraft owned and operated by Wright’s company Helibrook, causing the engine to stop mid-air.
The investigation also found low levels of cocaine in Robinson’s blood samples, but added there was insufficient evidence to determine if he was affected at the time.
The image showed the Outback Wrangler in the water at Tipperary Station, about 200km south of Darwin, and was posted by his friend to social media platform X on Saturday night
Wright delivered his first sit-down interview about the deadly crash on the weekend revealing he had received threats from the public, which were so severe he had been unable to mourn the loss of his friend.
The photo of Wright with his loved ones, which was shared to X, was accompanied with the caption: ‘Always a great day hanging with Matty… #f**kthehaters’.
‘I couldn’t give a f**k about haters. And I got plenty. They don’t even feature in my world’.
While one social media user was confused by the ‘hashtag’s sentiment’ others rallied around Wright in a landslide of support for the former TV-star.
‘Those guys are awesome,’ one user wrote.
‘F**k the haters. Keep strong,’ a second wrote.
Wright revealed his family had been subjected to vile abuse since the crash including death threats and vandalism at his other business – with one person cutting the power to his home while his wife was in the house.
He said he has stepped away from his helicopter business Helibrook for good.
‘I’ve sold the choppers. I’m getting away from all that, I don’t wanna go there again,’ he told The Sunday Telegraph.
‘I got publicly blamed for the death of my best mate it’s just not f***ing worth it.’
Another social media user said he was glad that Wright was ‘cleared’ of wrongdoing for the crash.
Wright is charged with seven offences over issues not directly relating to the crash, including attempting to pervert the course of justice, destroying evidence, fabricating evidence, unlawful entry and interfering with witnesses.
The interview was days after the Australian Transport Safety Bureau found the R44 helicopter (pictured) involved in the deadly February 2022 crash hadn’t refuelled before taking off
Wright’s ‘best mate’ Chris ‘Willow’ Wilson (pictured), who was dangling from the chopper on a 30m rope, was killed in the accident when the pilot released him during the crash landing
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau, last week ruled that the pilot Robinson did not refuel the aircraft owned and operated by Wright’s company, causing the engine to suddenly stop.
The investigation found the chopper’s engine stopped mid-flight and the pilot released the hooks and sling line during the emergency landing.
The height of the release, which was above nine metres, was ‘likely not survivable’ for Wilson, ATSB Chief Commissioner Angus Mitchell found.
The investigation also found low levels of cocaine in Robinson’s blood which increased the likelihood of fatigue, depression and inattention but added there was insufficient evidence to determine if he was affected at the time.
Wright said the ATSB findings had brought about mixed feelings and that rumours about the crash were ‘ludicrous’.
He also said the ‘noise’ that surrounded the shocking incident meant he had not been able to fully accept his best mate was gone.
‘There’s certain aspects of that report that makes you upset that it’s such a simple accident that killed Willow,’ he said.
‘We didn’t want that to be true. As hard as it is for everyone involved, there are some answers now as to what happened.
‘The pilot has suffered enough, he is in a wheelchair which is horrible, we’ve lost Willow, lives have been turned upside down, so I want it to just stop.’