THOUSANDS of pounds have been raised for the family of a North-East explorer who died while fulfilling his dream working as a diving instructor in Australia.

After travelling the world for the last ten years 31-year-old Daniel Wright fulfilled his dream of diving in the Great Barrier Reef.

The traveller from Newton Hall, Durham, had stints of living in different countries but always knew he was destined for the Australian coast.

He jumped at the chance to share his passion for life and the ocean with fellow divers and was offered a job as an instructor in Queensland.

But Mr Wright’s dream was cut short when he died in a car crash just weeks after the move, leaving his family heartbroken. They said they were devastated by the death and had lost their “shining light”.

The Northern Echo:

Daniel Wright from Durham City was described by his family as a “fearless” traveller

Mr Wright – who was proud of his Durham City routes – was known for his adventurous pastimes and admired by his family who said he was a “fearless” traveller living the dream.

A diving instructor, Mr Wright was happy following his passion in Australia but missed his family dearly. 

He would call his mother weekly to tell her he loved her and wanted a hug, despite the distance the family were extremely close.

His niece, Jessica Hay said: “He was such a fearless person. The day before he died he wrote a Facebook post which said once you become fearless, life become limitless. It was so true to him and he really stood by that.

“He lived life to the fullest and was an amazing person.

“He always followed his dreams no matter what as he always wanted to go to Australia. He was just so passionate about life and his family and we are so overwhelmed by all of the support and kindness people have shown us.”

The Northern Echo:

Mr Wright followed his heart and would think nothing of packing up and moving countries to find his next adventure.

His family said he affected people from all over the world and met lifelong friends wherever his adventures took him.

Those around him were left devastated however when they found out they were unable to transport his body home as insurance didn’t cover the cost.

The family would have to pay an estimated £10,000 to bring Mr Wright home.

His niece and her mother came up with the idea to create a JustGiving page to fundraise for the cause.

They set a target of £10,000 but were overwhelmed by the amount of public support surpassing the £10,000 mark within a week.

In the first 24 hours, more than £5,000 had been raised to bring Mr Wright home to his family.

The fundraising effort attracted donations from more than 450 people who left hundreds of messages honouring Mr Wright for his kind-hearted nature.

Many remembered him for his ventures which included trips to Thailand and Gibraltar, where he lived before settling in Australia.

He was also known as an animal lover even taking a stray dog under his wing in Thailand and working on a dolphin tour boat before becoming a diving instructor.

During his time in Thailand he also trained in Thai boxing with grand masters something his family are very proud of him for.

Although Mr Wright had travelled the world from the age of 21, he never forgot Durham. 

He loved the cold weather and was an avid Sunderland AFC supporter coming to games when he was back in the UK with his stepdad.

Mr Wright’s family are now in the process of organising the details to return his body back to the UK and said they are extremely grateful to everyone who donated to the cause.

In a statement online, the family said they would love to bring the driver home and will never forget him.