Keryn’s Story

Written by AHQ

20 September 2017

Keryn was the second Aussie Hero Volunteer who came along with me on Monday to deliver the laundry bags to the Invictus Team.   She also had a great time but she received an unexpected bonus when she met someone unexpectedly…. read on…..

Here is Keryn’s account of the day…

On Monday  I had the privilege of attending the presentation, made by Defence Minister, Marise Payne, of a Gym bag containing the Australian Invictus Team uniforms etc and most importantly the Laundry Bags, to the men & women who are participating in the Toronto Invictus Games 2017.   After the formalities and photo or two on the lawn, and then a delicious lunch, most of the recipients didn’t wait too long to check out their bag contents and were overjoyed, awestruck even, when they saw their Laundry Bags, each one personalised by our own treasured sewists. There were smiles and tears and a lot of “how did they (meaning the AHQ ladies & gents) know so much about me to personalise my bag?” You’ll be happy to know that no secrets were given away. 

I was amazed, as I have been in the past,  that the reactions of the recipients are joy, happiness and humility that someone who they don’t know, has taken the time and effort and care to make them a simple but beautiful laundry bag. We have once again excelled in our work and surpassed all expectations.  Well done to all involved and thanks to those who support us.

To the Australian Invictus Team, I think I speak for all of the AHQ team, in wishing them well in their chosen sports and safe travels. Be well and do your best. That’s all we ask. 

Cheers Keryn 

Keryn also managed to meet her recipient, athlete and swimmer, Melissa Roberts. 

But Keryn also got to meet another recipient, a connection that i had completely forgotten about. It was not til we were about to go and were saying goodbye to Katrina and Garry when the Invictus Team Co-Captain Peter Rudland caught up to say goodbye. 

We talked for a bit and then Keryn caught sight of Peter’s name tag….

Peter Rudland.  

Keryn knew that name as she had made Peter’s Wounded Warrior Quilt a few years ago.   This is the very special moment when the connection was realised!  

Peter’s Wounded Warrior Quilt is a very special one.   You see Garry and Pete were in the same blackhawk helicopter crash in 2010.  Whilst they both got out three other soldiers lost their lives.  One of them was PTE Ben Chuck.  Pete was sitting next to him at the time and was close mates with him.  When I asked Pete what he would like on his quilt he said he wanted this silhouette of Ben on it.   What an amazing picture, one of the best I have ever seen but one that has only ever been used on two quilts, Pete’s and one for Ben’s mother. 

The quilt incorporates components from the Avenue of Honour Memorial at Yungaburra including Ben’s silhouette and a depiction of the Illawarra Flame Tree.  Keryn’s work on the Flame Tree was painstaking. 

Pete sat with the Minister of Defence at lunch time and when he met Keryn he told her that he had been regaling them all with descriptions of his quilt, saying “your laundry bags are awsome, but my quilt is better than them all.”

It was certainly a great way for Keryn and Pete to end the visit!

Till next time…. Go TEAM AUSTRALIA!

Jan-Maree xx

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1 Comment

  1. kiwikid

    What a very special day.


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