Last month, Mackay’s Alison Graham was remembered as a great mum and a fantastic grandmother.
“When she passed away last year, I received so many phone calls and emails from people everywhere, people she worked with years ago and people that knew her in the community, and they all said how much of a great woman she was and that she will be sadly missed,” husband Ray said.
“Alison was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) and was given three to six months to live. I had two choices. Take my wife home or put her into a nursing home, and I took her home. It was my turn to look after her, which I did. I did everything I possibly could, under the guidance of the nurses.”
Sadly, she succumbed to illness within four months.
Now nearly a year since Alison’s passing, the local Walkerston Freemasons Lodge, which Ray is a Member of, has donated $10,000 to MND Queensland to improve the quality of life of sufferers and their families and help find a cure.
“It really made me think, this particular community organisation needs our donation this year.
“It’s such a heart-breaking disease, you have no control and there is no way of knowing you’ve got it until you get it. It’s so hard to watch someone you love go through it. Alison’s mother lived with MND for five years too,” Ray said.
In Australia two people are diagnosed with MND each day and another two people die of the disease each day. MND Queensland currently supports 281 people.
“The disease was first detected 150 years ago and I’m hopeful that we’re on the cusp of finding more answers. I want to thank my sister-in-law Dr Sarah Handley for inspiring our Lodge to do this in honour of Alison and for getting the ball rolling.”
Hand Heart Pocket Chief Executive Officer Sara Parrott said the Freemasons charity is proud to back Lodges to support the causes they care about.
“We are happy to help Walkerston Lodge to engage with their community and give to a cause that will enhance the quality of life of Queenslanders affected by MND and provide hope to many,” Ms Parrott said.
Photo: Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of Queensland, Paul Holland, Walkerston Lodge Member, Ray Graham and Mackay Freemason and local doctor, Dr Bill Boyd.