From his deathbed Geoff Walls' father urged him "go and get yourself checked".
He was dying of asbestosis, a condition caused by exposure to asbestos in the workplace. Mr Walls watched his father's pain and suffering unaware that he too would soon be facing his own personal battle with the deadly condition.
This Asbestos Awareness Week Mr Walls hopes to pass his warning on to get the experts in when handling the carcinogenic.
Mr Walls' father passed away in 2014, after decades of lung problems doctors attributed to smoking - despite the fact he had quit in 1948.
In his final days, he asked Mr Walls to contact the Dust Disease Register.
"I'd seen my dad suffer and go downhill to the stage where he needed constant oxygen to survive," he said.
"Seeing him go through that has certainly prepared me, but it's not a good feeling. I dread the thought of going down the same path."
Asbestos is still present in one in three Australian home and is estimated to be responsible for the death of 4,000 people in Australia a year, but many like Mr Walls and his father, don't find out until it's too late.
"They sent down an industrial history officer virtually the next day - dad was in a pretty bad way by that point, and had been in hospital for nearly three months," Mr Walls said.
"Dad worked at Tallawarra Power Station for nearly 20 years from the construction stage," Mr Wall said.
"It was a very high-risk environment, the piping was lagged with asbestos."
On advice from the Dust Disease Authority Mr Walls contacted a lawyer, who took a statement from his father the day before he died.
His cause of death was listed as "smoking related".
"Mum was livid," Mr Walls said.
"He hadn't smoked in more than 60 years. We had to have an autopsy."
Lung samples taken in the autopsy showed they were "full of asbestos fibre". In the meantime, Mr Walls had been managing his own breathing problems.
As an apprentice electrician at the steelworks in the 1960s, he had worked with asbestos products regularly.
He says he and hundred of other apprentices undertook projects on asbestos-filled materials in a large, open workshop.
He went on to suffer from shortness of breath, which doctors put down to asthma.
His dad had urged him to get tested after his interview with the Dust Disease Authority, which Mr Walls did.
But despite his long history of breathing problems, it would be another five years before he received his diagnosis.
"When I first started having breathing problems in the 1990s they sent me for heart checks, but there were no problems with my heart," he said.
"Mowing the lawn or trying to kick the football around with the grandkids, those sort of things become more and more difficult.
"Shortly after dad died in 2014 I had x-rays taken and the result came back that I didn't have a dust disease."
In 2019 Mr Walls was on a camping trip when bushfire smoke drove him home.
"My breathing was not good at all," he said.
"They did some CT scans and that's when the diagnosis was made."
Mr Walls was shocked.
"To find out it was asbestosis and not asthma, that was probably the most frustrating part. The other worry you have is the threat over your head of contracting mesothelioma or lung cancer."
Mr Walls hopes that by sharing his story this Asbestos Awareness Week he will encourage the hundreds of apprentices who began work when he did to get any breathing problems thoroughly checked.
He also hopes increased awareness will ensure everyone takes the greatest care when handling asbestos.
In NSW in the six months from 2020-21 there were 215 deaths from asbestos-related diseases. Fifty people were diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease in the same period.
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