Raquel?s chair at the table is empty



IT will be a little less festive and a little more solemn around the O'Gradys' Yeppoon home this Christmas with their second youngest daughter, Raquel, on tour in Iraq.

The 34-year-old Royal Australian Air Force pay clerk has been a part of Operation Catalyst for about one month, and is doing a four-month tour.

Her sister Madonna O'Grady said she misses her younger sister and sometimes worries.

"She sounds okay on the phone,'' the 36-year-old sibling said.

"But it's hard to know because she can't talk about a lot of stuff.''

This is only the second Christmas Ms O'Grady has spent away from her family of six siblings.

"We usually all get together,'' she said.

"Even though there is always a lot of people around you still notice her absence.''

She said her kids will especially miss their auntie, who is considered the cool one.

"She always used to come by with presents for the kids,'' she said.

"They loved it.''

The exact location of Ms O'Grady in Iraq could not be revealed even to her family.



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