As Dan headed into the final year of his uni career, there was another, much more significant event around the corner. In April, the Hutchinson clan welcomed to the world their newest and cutest member, Dan and Melita’s firstborn child, their daughter Josie. Parenthood came naturally to the couple, which was good news as Josie wouldn’t be the only child for very long…

Some other big events of 2006 were:

– Cyclone Larry hits Cairns and Innisfail, causing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of damage although, thankfully, no casualties;

– John Howard’s controversial and unpopular Workchoices reforms take effect;

– Prime Ministerial history repeats when it emerges John Howard made a deal with Peter Costello to hand over the Liberal Leadership after two terms in office;

– Australia loses 2 icons in the space of a week when Steve Irwin is killed by a stingray in Queensland and Peter Brock is killed in a rally race;

– Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard defeat Kim Beazley for the leadership of the Federal Labor Party;

– Brant Webb and Todd Russell emerge from the mineshafts at Beaconsfield after being trapped for 14 days;

– Veteran journalist Richard Carleton dies from a heart attack during a press conference at the mine compound;

– The Socceroos advance to the second round of the World Cup finals, only to be denied entry to the Quarter Finals by a pathetic referee decision made after an Italian player disgraced himself by diving in the penalty box;

– The Brisbane Broncos when an unexpected 6th Premiership, defeating Melbourne Storm 14-6;

– Queensland end 3 years of misery by staging a typical, yet stirring, last minute comeback against a typically complacent NSW Blues. It would be another 8 years before the NSW side would lift the trophy again. And it would be much too soon;

– Cricket legends Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath announce their retirement from the game;

– Saddam Hussein is executed in Baghdad;

The Fountain, An Inconvenient Truth, United 93, Little Children, Miami Vice, V For Vendetta, Borat, The Departed, Casino Royale and Happy Feet are released;

Deaths:                Pro Hart (28 March), Don Chipp (28 August), Robert Altman (20 November), James Brown (25 December), Gerald Ford (26 December)