Jody Amanda of Grafton needs help with his cancer battle.
Jody Amanda of Grafton needs help with his cancer battle.

Help Jo turn the tables on tragedy

LIFE continues to deal a tough hand to a man who lost his wife in a freak storm which hit Coffs Harbour in November 1996.

Jody ‘Jo’ Amanda is no stranger to hardship and tragedy.

Not only has he been through several natural disasters, he now faces mounting bills associated with the treatment of tumours.

He is understandably struggling.

In 1996 Mr Amanda and his wife at the time moved to Coffs Harbour from Armidale after their caravan was severely damaged in a hail storm. Three days after their arrival, his wife tragically drowned in the notorious November flood.

“We moved down to Coffs Harbour on the Wednesday and on the Saturday it flooded out; I lost her, she drowned,” Mr Amanda said.

Trying to move on with his life, Mr Amanda then relocated to Palmers Island where his caravan was again ruined by a flood.

Mr Amanda then settled in a residence in Grafton, leaving the caravan life behind.

While the elements have given Mr Amanda some peace for the moment, his latest hardship is a battle with tumours growing on the back of his head.

According to Mr Amanda, the tumours were dormant until he suffered a blow on the back of his head which triggered them into malignancy.

“The tumours were there but they were laying dormant and the blow made them rise up; now I’m having chemo over at the hospital.”

Unfortunately what probably sounds to most people like a cruel joke is the hand Mr Amanda has been dealt in life and he is finally beginning to struggle both emotionally and financially.

Mr Amanda’s fiance and carer, who did not wish to be named, said Mr Amanda had suffered more in the last 15 years than people should ever have to suffer in a whole lifetime.

“He’s been through a hail storm, he’s lost his wife in the Coffs Harbour flood and now he’s got tumours,” she said.

Mr Amanda said because he was living on the pension, he was finding it extremely difficult to pay his day to day living expenses let alone his mounting medical bills.

“If you don’t have the money, you miss out; tough luck,” he said.

Mr Amanda’s plight was noticed by Pastor John Baker of the Christian Outreach Centre who has set up a fund where the public could donate money to assist Mr Amanda with his mounting expenses.

Mr Amanda said he was extremely grateful to Jon Baker and the Christian Outreach Centre for the assistance.

“He’s (Jon Baker) been more than helpful; you wont find another minister quite like him.” Mr Amanda said.

Anyone wishing to help Mr Amanda can make donations to Foodcare at 68 Pound Street, Grafton, on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays between 9am and 1pm.

For more information contact Foodcare Grafton on 6642 6473

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