By: Paul Litherland Published: Oct 2023 320 Pages
Well respected and renowned Australian cyber safety educator, and 2022 WA Australian of the Year Paul Litherland, shares his lifes journey in this amazing biography.
From a childhood destroyed by the most horrific of domestic violence, through a decorated policing career and a near fatal car crash, Paul shares his inspiring journey in gripping detail.
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Paul has had to fight most of his life!
With a childhood destroyed by the most severe domestic violence, to growing up in poverty as his Mother struggled to raise 5 kids on her own, Paul started life in the harshest of environments.
After starting work at 16 to support his family and whilst struggling to secure himself financially, Paul beat the odds and achieved his dream of becoming a WA Police Officer at the age of 24. By 31, with a wife and young son, his life was finally free of bitter struggles.
But life was to be turned upside down again for Paul and his young family, when in 2004 he was hit by a car whilst standing on the side of the southern freeway. Though surviving the impact, Paul suffered horrific injuries and soon realised he was about to face the greatest battle of his life. After 6years of painful rehabilitation, battling severe depression and attempts at suicide, Paul was able to drag himself out of the darkest of places with the motivation to fight for others.
In 2009, as a permanently injured officer, Paul was offered a non-operational position within the Technology Crime Investigation Unit of the WA Police. This is where his passion to educate kids about the risks of the online world was born. That journey continues today, with Paul now considered one of Australias' leading educators in Cyber Safety, with a reputation unmatched across the nation.
"A lifes journey which is truly inspirational!"
After facing the hardest of challenges life has to offer, Paul has continued to brush himself off and start again. This life long determination being recognised by receiving a Pride of Australia Medal in 2007, a National Service Medal in 2016 and a Police Star Medal in 2017. His achievements and determination, together with his unwavering service to the Australian community, culminated in Paul being named the 2022 WA Australian of the Year.
Content Warning - "Finding My Way Out of the Darkness" contains material that is sometimes confronting and disturbing. Words or images can cause sadness or distress, or trigger traumatic memories for people, particularly survivors of past abuse, violence or childhood trauma. The book describes events of domestic violence, child abuse and online harm.
"Finding My Way Out of The Darkness’ might push the limits of your ‘comfort zone’ at the outset but as you get into this challenging but riveting story you understand why Paul needed to reveal, in shocking detail, the unspeakable, mindless violence he and his family, particularly his mother, endured for so long...
Ross Addison - Biographer
"I could not put this book down. Paul is such a credit to his family and I simply can't believe he survived with such a positive outlook on life."
Melissa Doyle - 6PR Listener
"Now I have read Paul's story, another piece of the puzzle fits into place. These pages perfectly reflect why he has spent most of his life protecting kids. "Remarkable" does not do this man justice."
Andrew Dunne - School Teacher
"Paul's story is one which sadly affected so many kids from the 60's and 70's, including myself. Though I was in tears throughout the first few chapters, his words of hope and healing gave me an overwhelming feeling of love and hope. Well done great man!"
"People need to hear your story Paul. Though these pages are at times difficult to get through, I was left in awe at how you managed to get over the hurdles you faced. Your journey can help others and I hope you can share your messages with thousands."
Donna - Mother of five