Swimsuit model Heather McCartney arrested for stripping naked at AFL Grand Final has surgery6 min read

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A swimsuit model and cancer survivor who was arrested for stripping at the AFL Grand Final in 2014 has flown to Turkey for facial reconstructive surgery.

Heather McCartney, 31, is on the mend after having extensive work to repair her shattered nose in an Istanbul hospital.

The single mother, who emigrated to the Gold Coast from Scotland aged 22, posted a photo of herself arriving at Istanbul Airport on Instagram on Friday.

She also posted an old photo of herself covered in blood and bruises, along with an X-ray of her broken nose.

Speaking to Daily Mail Australia, Ms McCartney revealed the truth behind her grand final stunt, and even promised to repeat it if Scotland becomes independent 

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Heather McCartney arrived in Istanbul on Friday and has since checked into hospital

Heather McCartney arrived in Istanbul on Friday and has since checked into hospital

She was later arrested and fined $300

Five years on, she has no regrets about the stunt

Ms McCartney made headlines by stripping off in a corporate box at the 2014 AFL grand final

Ms McCartney sustained the horrendous injuries in 2018, and said she had no choice but to have the expensive operation overseas.

‘I was also told by many surgeons in Australia and Asia that my surgery could not be achieved,’ Ms McCartney said.

‘My nose was broken so badly that they refused to work on it. I had a lengthy, costly and frustrating time consulting with many surgeons around the world.’ 

In June 2018, her then husband Stewart Weatherill was found not guilty of assaulting her.  

The magistrate implemented a five year protection order for him to not contact or come within 100 metres of Ms McCartney or their young daughter until 2023.

Ms McCartney said she’s feeling really good after the surgery, where parts of her rib cartilage were used to reconstruct her nose.

‘I’m glad that it’s finally happened,’ she told Daily Mail Australia from Istanbul on Saturday.

‘It’s been a long time waiting. I am a little sore on the ribs where they took parts from, however that’s how it works. 

‘No pain, no gain. I’ve found the best surgeon and he was happy to explain to me the process with the rib cartilage and was realistic about my expectations and results.’

She’s now waiting to see the maxillo facial surgeon about realigning her jaw. 

‘It’s sitting a couple of centimetres out and it hurts on the daily,’ Ms McCartney said.

‘Also my dentist will fix the broken teeth after my jaw has been reworked. It’s taking ages but my daughter has been priority before this. So Mummy has to wait.’

'It’s been 48 hours since I had surgery. I’m at maximum swelling now I hope . It hurts bad and I am back in my hotel chilling,' Heather McCartney (pictured) posted on Instagram on Saturday

‘It’s been 48 hours since I had surgery. I’m at maximum swelling now I hope . It hurts bad and I am back in my hotel chilling,’ Heather McCartney (pictured) posted on Instagram on Saturday

Ms McCartney said she has to undergo reconstructive surgery to repair damage to her nose

Ms McCartney said she has to undergo reconstructive surgery to repair damage to her nose

She has since posted a series of Instagram stories of her hospital admission, city views from her bed, selfies donning her hospital gown, enjoying the bedside dining service and of her post-operation recovery at her hotel.

Ms McCartney will be in Istanbul for another week before heading to Scotland, where her family are currently looking her three-year-old daughter Annah.

Her Instagram post was inundated with messages from supportive well-wishers.

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‘My goodness babe, I’m wishing you all the best for health and recovery and peace as you truly deserve it,’ one commented.

Another added: ‘Hope everything turns out the way you want it to. Good Luck!’ 

Ms McCartney, now 31, first arrived in Australia nine years ago as a backpacker.

Originally from Scotland, the former Playboy model is also a cancer survivor

Originally from Scotland, the former Playboy model is also a cancer survivor

Ms McCartney cheering on Hawthorn at the 2014 AFL grand final, where she was later arrested

Ms McCartney cheering on Hawthorn at the 2014 AFL grand final, where she was later arrested

She caused a stir when she stripped off at the MCG during the 2014 AFL Grand Final between Hawthorn and the Sydney Swans after she made a bet that she would ‘get naked’ if the Hawks won.

The Hawks thrashed the Swans by 63 points that day. 

She spent the night in a police cell and was later fined $300 for the stunt.

‘It was a bet. I said if Hawthorn win, I’m getting naked. They won, and I got naked,’ she told the Herald Sun at the time. 

‘What a f*****g day, it was great’

Ms McCartney posted a raunchy photograph of herself, with her hair in pigtails, wearing just a yellow bikini top and dark bottoms – Hawthorn colours – and a red AFL ball in one hand after being released from police custody.

At the time of the stunt, she had just begun treatment for aplastic anemia, a cancer of the blood. 

Five years on, Ms McCartney has no regrets about the stunt and would consider doing it again.

‘That old chestnut,’ she laughed when asked about it by Daily Mail Australia.

‘Six months prior to that I had just been told I had a couple of weeks to live. I then had my bone marrow/stem cell transplant treatment and survived. It was a bucket list thing, spur of the moment. 

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‘And if Scotland get their independence, I’ll do it again.’ 

Ms Cartney later went into remission and had given up partying and booze when she found out she was 24 weeks pregnant in March 2016.

The single mum says she's missing her little girl but is excited for her new nose and face

The single mum says she’s missing her little girl but is excited for her new nose and face

Heather McCartney, now 33, first arrived in Australia nine years ago as a backpacker

Heather McCartney, now 33, first arrived in Australia nine years ago as a backpacker

The shock discovery was made during a cancer check-up.

‘I was pretty shocked at first, but I’m pretty excited and happy about it,’ Ms McCartney told Daily Mail Australia at the time.

‘I just told them what had been happening – I had just been feeling normal but I started thinking my stomach was getting a big bigger.’ 

‘I didn’t think there was a chance I could get pregnant.’ 

She gave birth to her ‘miracle baby’, daughter Annah Rose, now three-and-a-half in June 2016. 

Heather McCartney said she had no choice but to have the expensive operation overseas.

Heather McCartney said she had no choice but to have the expensive operation overseas.

She and Annah later returned to Brisbane and will return there after she recovers from her recent surgery back in Scotland.  

‘We are both Australian citizens. I’ve lived in Australia almost a decade now. It’s home,’ Ms McCartney said.

‘For a short time I needed my family support so I went back to Scotland for that.’

‘My hope for Annah and I are that we are happy, healthy and progress in life the best we can.’

‘I just love her to bits and I want the very best for her.’