DESTROYED: The Walsh family home in Church Street. INSET: Kylie Jones, Gary Walsh, Kylie Walsh and Patrice Brown out the front of Drummond Golf on Yaamba Rd.
DESTROYED: The Walsh family home in Church Street. INSET: Kylie Jones, Gary Walsh, Kylie Walsh and Patrice Brown out the front of Drummond Golf on Yaamba Rd. Allan Reinikka ROK211116afire1

Melbourne Storm players help Rocky house fire victims

IT'S not every day the Melbourne Storm players help out a Rockhampton family.

But thanks to former Capras player Cameron Munster and his family, they have organised to get a jersey autographed to help a family who lost their home in a fire last month.

Kylie and Gary Walsh look to have to rebuild after their Queenslander home was gutted in a fire on November 20.

Kylie was down the Capricorn Coast with friends, celebrating their children's Year 12 graduation, while Gary popped out to get dinner when the fire broke out.

Since then, the couple who run Drummond Golf on Yaamba Rd have been overwhelmed by the support of community including the organisation of a golf fundraiser day for this weekend and a major raffle featuring the jersey as the first prize.

Mrs Walsh said the insurance company was, at this stage, talking about rebuilding on the site as the house is too damaged to repair.

"It would be nice to build what we had, but it's out of our reach (too expensive),” she said.

The family photos of when their four children - now aged 17-24 - were growing up, were spared in the fire.

Mrs Walsh said she had sorted these into plastic bags a few months ago and then into plastic containers which she left downstairs.

She said upstairs was gutted and downstairs had also been burned in the fire, but had also received a fair amount of water damage.

The couple bought the house 12 years ago and had added to the renovation work the previous owners had carried out.

Now, the family which includes two children still living at home, will have to rebuild from the ground up.

They are currently living in a rental property in Wandal and have purchased basic items such as a fridge and beds.

The family is still waiting for the insurance company to determine the full amount of what will be paid out.

Meanwhile, friends Kylie Jones and Patrice Brown have organised the fundraising activities including the charity golf day this Sunday in which at least 100 people are expected to attend.

There is also a multi-draw raffle and a major raffle (to be drawn on Australia Day).

Rockhampton Police Senior Sergeant Ralph Faria said emergency services were called to the Church St, Allenstown, home after neighbours noticed smoke coming from the house about 9.30pm.

Mrs Walsh said one neighbour told her the flames were blue.



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