Page One

Orange County man missing after Saturday’s Bali bombing

Amanda Riddle The Associated Press
Tuesday October 15, 2002

LOS ANGELES — An Orange County man on a Bali surfing trip to celebrate his 41st birthday is missing after a bombing on the resort island, his family and friends said Monday. 

Steven Brooks Webster of Huntington Beach traveled to the Indonesian island with two friends. All three were avid surfers. 

He and friend Steven Cabler were inside a nightclub Saturday night when a car bomb ripped through the building, killing more than 180 people and injuring hundreds. 

Another friend, John Frederick Parodi Jr., left the club just before the blast. He has been trying to locate his friend, but Webster remained unaccounted for Monday. 

Parodi has searched hospitals, posted photos of Webster, handed them out to authorities and looked through body bags, said Webster’s best friend, Trent Walker, who has spoken by telephone to Parodi and Cabler. 

“He has been unable to locate him, either alive or dead,” Walker said Monday. 

Webster’s wife, Mona, said from the couple’s Huntington Beach home that she has contacted a hospital in northern Australia where severely injured victims were airlifted for treatment. 

“I’ve been on the phone with those people,” she said. “I’ve been faxing his pictures.” 

The three friends had gone out to dinner and then to the Sari Club, a popular surfer hangout, but Parodi left and returned to their hotel, said Walker, 40, of Newport Beach. Cabler was sitting next to Webster at the bar about a half hour later when the bomb exploded and the roof collapsed on them. 

Cabler was able to pull himself out of the rubble, but he never saw Webster again, Walker said. 

Cabler, 42, of Newport Beach, was treated at a hospital for third-degree burns. He was headed back to California on Monday. Parodi, 42, of Huntington Beach, was scheduled to return home Tuesday. 

“Before he leaves he wants to get closure as to whether Steve made it or didn’t,” Walker said. 

Webster, who has a 5-year-old son and teenage stepdaughter, also golfs, sails and enjoys deep-sea fishing. He had been on previous surfing trips to Mexico and Fiji, but had never been to Bali, said Stephen Quartararo, who co-owns a Newport Beach environmental consulting firm with Webster. 

The friends began thinking about the trip a few years ago. 

“When you hit 40 and you have this last big thing on your mind, you want to do it,” he said. “It was a big moment in his life. 

They were supposed to leave the island a day and a half after the bomb attack, he Quartararo. 

“We’re trying to get all the photos out and make everyone aware in the event that if they see his face, somebody will recognize him,” he said.