Girlfriend appeals for help

ALL Sam Paynter wants for Christmas is her boyfriend back home in Rockhampton.

Darren Jeacocke, 21, tragically broke his neck in June leaving him paralysed.

He has been stuck in a Brisbane Hospital ever since. "He is staying in the spinal unit in Brisbane,'' said his 16year-old girlfriend.

"I go and visit him once a month.''

Ms Paynter has also started fundraising at her job to try and assist with the massive expense of bringing her boyfriend home.

Unfortunately, the trip will cost much more than a simple plane ticket.

Mr Jeacocke needs to purchase wheelchairs, find wheelchair friendly accommodation and transportation and still re- quires fulltime care.

Although the government will cover some of his costs, the homecoming will still cost thousands of dollars, she said. "I just started raising money the other day,'' she said. "We've already got about $130.''

Of course, the trip home is just one obstacle in a long journey for Mr Jeacocke.

The accident put his life on hold.

Mr Jeacocke, who was once an active cyclist and Central Queensland University multi-media student, now struggles to do even the smallest of tasks.

But he is determined to walk again and Ms Paytner said he will do whatever it takes.

"Right now he can just move his arms up and down,'' she said. "He still has no use of his fingers though.''

If you would like to help support Mr Jeacocke's homecoming please call 0408 747 408.



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