Kylie overwhelmed by new house
“I can’t tell you how I feel, I just wish there was a stronger word for overwhelmed,” she said.
“It just doesn’t seem enough to describe what the Bangalow community has done for my family.
“I feel their support and love every day and yes I am truly overwhelmed.”
Almost two years ago on April 14, 2007, Kylie’s husband Richard, now aged 32, was injured in a rugby union match at Byron Bay which left him a complete quadriplegic.
Following the accident, Richard spent 12 months in hospital in Brisbane and for the past 12 months he has been living in a specially-designed house at Beenleigh.
But, in another three to six months, Kylie, Richard and their six-year-old daughter Clover will have their own house in Bangalow thanks to the generosity of the local community.
The house, in the aptly-named Clover Hill Estate, has been financed through funds raised by the Richard Allen 14 organisation – a fund established after Richard had his accident.
To date, the fund has raised $200,000, wiht more fundraising events being planned.
Kylie and Clover moved back to Bangalow earlier this year, so that Clover could start school.
“We are just so excited at the prospect of finally having Richard back home in Bangalow and in our specially-designed new house,” Kylie said.
“All our dreams and plans for the future changed once Richard had the accident, but now because of the new house, there’s flowers in the garden, whereas before there were only weeds.”
Kylie said Richard was doing really well, but he needed around-the-clock care.
“Living in Beenleigh has been hard for everyone, you feel like you are limbo,” she said.
“Now there’s a reason to get up each day and that reason is the new house.
“We are coming back to family and friends and we are just so grateful.”
Kylie said that one of their biggest challenges was financial.
“The costs involved with Richard’s care are phenomenal,” she said.
President of the Richard Allen 14 fund, Neil Moran, said the generosity of the Bangalow community had been unbelievable.
“The foundations for the house are now down and it’s full steam ahead for the next couple of months,” he said.
“I would particularly like to thank builder Michael Hartigan who has been responsible for getting the house to this stage.
“Thanks also to every tradesperson who has worked on the site and to all businesses who have donated materials.
“From now on builder Jim Monti will take over.”
Members of the Richard Allen 14 fund meet every Tuesday night at the Bangalow Bowling Club and Mr Moran said new members were always most welcome.
Upcoming fundraising plans include a sportsman’s lunch and a possible golf day.
Every Saturday is now volunteer day at the house site and anybody who would like to lend a hand is asked to turn up.