By Humphrey Carter
A 26-year-old Australian nurse who had been working as a barmaid in Palma for the past 18 months has been tragically shot and killed in Thailand.
Nurse Pam Fitzpatrick, born in South Africa but raised in Australia, had spent the best part of the last two years based in the Majorcan capital and working at McGowan's Irish Pub in La Lonja. The bubbly and extremely popular young woman had travelled to Thailand from Majorca to accompany her younger sister, 20-year-old Jenny, who wanted to go on holiday to the paradise destination but sadly Pam will not be returning to Palma to tell her many friends all about her travels. Pam and Jenny arrived in Thailand on June 17 to spend a holiday in Kanchanburim the site of World War II's Burma railway and Bridge over the River Kwai, 150 km west of the Thai capital Bangkok. They then planed to travel to Laos.
The following day, Sunday 18, the two gathered with fellow travellers at the Up To You bar in the town to watch Australia's World Cup qualifying match against Brazil. According to friends of Ms Fitzpatrick in Palma, who only learnt of her tragic death two days ago, in the early hours of the morning, someone was heard to have shouted “quick” in Thai and a motorbike drove past the bar with the driver, or passenger, pumping up to four random shots into the busy pub. According to Thai and Australian police reports, one of the bullets hit Pam Fitzpatrick in the neck, severing her spinal cord.
She was rushed to a Bangkok hospital with a police escort and spent the next few days fighting for her life.
She apparently spent three days in a coma before sadly passing away. Her family, who described the young nurse as “bubbly and happy”, are said to be distraught. Her father Kevin and brothers Alan, Timothy and Robin, flew out to Bangkok last week to attend a 30 minute service for Pam.
She was cremated after a short ceremony with Buddhist monks and local officials in attendance as well as the Australian Consul.
As many as 60 Thai police are involved in the on-going investigation and the latest reports suggest that Pam was shot by the passenger on the motorbike who was wearing a full-face helmet. However, the motive for the drive-by shooting remains uncertain.
Earlier in the evening there had apparently been a dispute between five or six local men and the owners of an adjacent bar while other reports claim the incident was sparked by a man who had “lost face” when rejected by a bar girl earlier in the evening. Since the beginning of the year several small bars in the tourist town have been targeted by youths in drive-by shootings and at least six people have been killed. Pam's family moved to Australia from South Africa ten years ago because they feared South Africa was no longer safe.
This evening a wake will be held at McGowan's pub in La Lonja in memory of the punters' favourite barmaid.
She will be greatly missed.


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