Michael Chamberlain. Photo: AAP
Michael Chamberlain. Photo: AAP

Ex-husband of Lindy Chamberlain dies aged 72

MICHAEL Chamberlain, the man who fought one of Australia's longest battles for justice - the fight to clear his family's name after their baby daughter Azaria was snatched by a dingo in 1980 - has died aged 72, according to reports.

It was only back in July last year that Chamberlain exclusively told news.com.au's Megan Palin that he "wouldn't wish his life on anyone".

In one of Australia's most high profile cases, Lindy and Michael Chamberlain tragically lost their nine-week old daughter Azaria in 1980 when a dingo crept into her tent at Uluru and took off with her in its mouth. Azaria was never seen again.

Lindy was charged with murder, and Michael an accessory after the fact. Lindy spent years in jail until new evidence came to light and proved their innocence. The couple was exonerated and Lindy was released in 1986.

But the pair had been through the wringer. They divorced in 1991.

In 2012, Lindy and Michael fronted the Supreme Court in Darwin together when a Coroner ruled that a dingo had taken and killed Azaria. It had taken 32 years, four inquests, a trial, jail time, an exoneration, and a whole lot of heartache - but the case into Azaria's death was finally closed.

Both remarried but Michael said in July last year that he still faced many challenges.

His second wife Ingrid suffered a stroke about five years ago and he had been her primary voluntary carer ever since.

"My life - I don't wish it on anyone," he said.

"I'm looking after my profoundly disabled wife in what is essentially our hospital home.

"I've done that for the past five years, except the last seven months when we got three attendants to support us.

"She had a massive stroke … she's paralysed. She needs care in every way.

"This is a hell of a thing to happen."

During the interview hit back at comments made by his ex-wife Lindy about how she struggled to forgive him more than anyone, including those who played a role in wrongly convicting her for the murder of their daughter Azaria.

Lindy Chamberlain-Creighton revealed it wasn't the NT Police, media, general public or the jury that convicted her that she had to fight hardest to forgive.

"It's my ex-husband," she told news.com.au at a National Christian Conference in Sydney.

Lindy wouldn't specify what it was she felt she had to forgive Michael for when pressed for further information. "That's private," she said.

Lindy told the audience she had fought not to "get stuck on bitterness and resentment".

"If you're holding the anger … you're not hurting them at all. They're succeeding well beyond their wildest dreams. It's you that's dying," she said.

Michael today told news.com.au that he and Lindy once "had a wonderful marriage" and he was surprised to learn of her comments.

"It's two different perspectives. I've moved on," he said.

"I don't agree with her. I never have.

"If she wants to she can talk to me personally or privately but she's never done that.

"I've got nothing against her and welcome a chat.

"I wish her well in any path she chooses to follow."

- with Megan Palin


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