Diver Profile: Denise Lawler

I haven’t really had a ‘scarey dive’ but have had ‘scrarey thoughts’; As the boat leaves the wharf – ‘Did I lock my car?’ And back on the surface – ‘What’s the boat doing all the way over there’

1. How you started

Growing up in a diving family it seemed inevitable. My father is Clarrie Lawler who was a member of URG in the 60’s and 70’s… was President for a stint there and was actively involved in URG research and teaching at the Australian Museum. From an early age I hung out with the URG divers and loved the diving/water arena. I remember loving just sitting on the boat when it was parked at our house. Family holidays and weekends were always held by the sea and snorkeling somewhere, usually up or down NSW coast. URG Jervis Bay weekends away were common, camping at Greenpatch and watching the
divers do their thing are great memories for me. So after that intro, teens and 20’s saw me ‘doing as teenagers do’, 20’s and 30’s saw me in workforce and motherdome, then….. hello 40 hello dive certification!

2. Top dive/s

My two highlight dive trips are; the Minki whale trip, Great Barrier Reef. Manado & Lembeh Strait – Nth Sulawesi

3. Top wreck dive/s

Truk Lagoon, quite an achievement for me and well worth with experience.


4. Night dive/s

Gili Air, Indonesia. I loved seeing the night life of mating crabs, octopus and Parrotfish sleeping in their slimy bubble beds.

5. Most scarey dive/s

Scariest dives were weaving around inside the belly of warships in Truk lagoon, in amongst twisted metal in the dark depths.

6. Weirdest buddy

No weird ones. Just one I never want again. Was early in dive life with a ‘stranger buddy’ on a commercial operator boat. We met, shook hands, geared up, rolled in, never saw him again.

7. Favourite piece of equipment

All of them combined to give me a fun day out.

8. Favourite buddy

I have no favourites, all URG buddies are great.

9. The best days diving ever!

Got to be tropical diving holidays with URG friends.