On this day 34 years ago Martin was killed by a shark

ON THIS day 34 years ago, Byron Bay man Martin Ford was killed after he was bitten by a shark while surfing at Cosy Corner, Byron Bay.

It was believed to be the first fatal shark attack on the Far North Coast.

His mates have taken to Facebook today to remember him, including those who were at the scene and tried desperately to save him.

The Shark Encounters Eastern Australia Facebook page shared a photo of Marty, with the caption: "Today we remember Marty Ford who, on this day in 1982, lost his life to a shark at Tallow Beach, Byron Bay. Gone but not forgotten. Thinking also of his mates who tried bravely to save him."

The front page of The Northern Star on March 8, 1982, the day after a shark attack which killed Byron Bay man Martin Ford.
The front page of The Northern Star on March 8, 1982, the day after a shark attack which killed Byron Bay man Martin Ford. Rebecca Lollback

Another one of the surfers, Marc Jones, wrote: "RIP Marty. Always remembered."

Jen King posted: "Such a beautiful friend, taken too soon. RIP."

The Northern Star reported at the time that Mr Ford had been surfing with five friends, all Byron Bay locals - Michael Bienke, Bryan Layton, Michael Berrell, Ian Kennedy and Mark (Marc) Jones.

The Star said Mr Ford received "massive injuries to the back of his left leg and lesser cuts to his right leg".

"They were surfing in two metres of water, about 180m from shore, and were all within a 15m radius of each other," the report stated.

"Jones said that he saw the shark come from underneath Ford's surfboard, leaping about three-quarters of its length out of the water and tipping the victim underneath the surface."

It was reported that Mr Jones and Mr Kennedy towed Mr Ford back to shore and applied a tourniquet using a leg rope.

A witness to the attack phoned emergency services, and Mr Ford was carried on a surfboard back to the car park.

"He kept on saying he could not breathe," Mr Bienke told The Northern Star at the time.

Mr Ford was taken to hospital but died before he arrived.

It was believed to be the first fatal shark attack in New South Wales since 1963, and the first fatal attack on the Far North Coast.