THE entire nation quite rightly is united in grief this week as the full extent of the Victorian fire tragedy unfolds.
As we go to press the death toll has risen to 130 - the worst natural disaster in Australia's history.
Already we are hearing and reading stories of devastating loss, of astonishing escapes, and of remarkable courage.
We must remember the astonishing bravery of the firefighters, some of whom fought on not knowing that their own families had perished.
To quote Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan, 'they went back out to help their friends, to help their neighbours or to help people they didn't even know because they have such a commitment to their community'.
The events of February 7, worse than Black Friday in 1939 and Ash Wednesday in 1983, will be forever etched in our hearts.
Tonight's Australia v New Zealand cricket match in Adelaide will see $100 for every run scored and $5000 for every six as well as $1m from the match sponsors.
Red Cross has opened a special account for Coffs Coast residents to make a donation to the disaster appeal. Already Quota International has donated $1000 to the fund. If you wouldlike to donate, the account is at the BCU, account number: 25009520.3
The Bank of Queensland will also be accepting donations for the victims ofthe fires, which will go to the Red Cross Victoria Bushfire Appeal.
So please give generously to a very worth cause.