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Mon 16 Mar 1998

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We visited Woodies mother, Jennie, in Adlaide Hospital.

She was in her brother Bob's Tarago with Bob's wife, her husband Richard, Woodie and Woodie's brother Tony. They were returning from a weekend at Lake Mungo which is in Tony's charge as a NPWS officer. Apparently a tire blew out and the vehicle rolled several times.

Woodie was thrown out through the nearside rear window with a bunch of gear including two chairs all of which finished up on top of him. He suffered lacerations to the face, a collapsed lung, a damaged bladder, a crushed urethra and a pelvis cracked in several places. On the way to Mildura Hospital, the ambulance stopped every fifteen minutes because Woodie was vomiting and excreting virtually pure blood. He is still in Mildura Hospital.

Jennie was struck on the head by the roof as it caved in and she suffered severly lacerated scalp and fractures to the first, second and sixth cervical vertebrae.

Tony was apparently violently shaken as he suffered no external injuries but he has had trouble with his memory since the accident.

Richard suffered a broken finger. Bob and his wife were virtually unscathed.

After the accident those who were not hurt had to tend the injured. They built a temporary shelter with chairs and a blanket. They waited nearly an hour for a car to drive by so that they could raise the alarm. The ambulance arrived a further one and a half hours later. Luckily they didn't move Jennie.

She was stabilised by the ambos, transported to Mildura, and taken by flying doctor to the Adelaide Hospital Spinal Unit where her treatment was put in place. She is presently on her back with no traction and no neck brace. She seems to be doing very well and is looking forward to leaving hospital in a few days or a couple of weeks when the soft tissue damage has healed. This will be signalled by her being able to raise her head. She will then be put in a neck brace and will manage her own recupertion at her mother's home in Adelaide.

In a demonstration of the humanity of the people of Australia, the local community in Kempsey are looking after Jennie's house and garden while she is in hospital and have determined to raise the money to pay her airfare from Adelaide to Kempsey when she is recovered.

We drove to Nuriootpa to stop overnight in the caravan park.

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Created on Mon, 16 Mar 1998 - Last revised Mon, 11 May 1998