Fundraiser for Jake’s family

BALLINA and Byron Bay rugby league clubs will dedicate their matches this weekend to Jake Kedzlie and hold a fundraiser for the family.

The grandson of NSW Origin legend Tommy Raudonikis suffered a head injury when trying to make a tackle for Sawtell in a junior rugby league match last Saturday.

He was taken off life support on Monday morning.

The Byron Bay Red Devils' Jeff Barnes said the Norton and Raudonikis families have had a strong association with both clubs.

"Jake's uncle, Lincoln, also played with both clubs in junior football," he said.

"It's uncanny that it happens to be this weekend that Byron meet Ballina, so it's the perfect opportunity for us to try to raise some money through a donation bucket at the gate and around the ground on the day.

"The family, as I understand it, whilst doing it tough emotionally, are battling financially and it's an opportunity for the locals to raise some money to at least help alleviate some of the costs - it's enough tragedy as it is."

Byron Bay is hosting the game at Red Devil Park on Sunday.

"I know that the Ballina supporters will be generous in their donations as well," Mr Bairnes said.

The under 18s kick off at midday and the first grade will kick off at 2.45pm.

Jake's uncle, Lincoln Raudonikis from Ballina, said his sister, Jake's mother, was overwhelmed by the support.

He explained the family had been hit hard financially when their builder went bankrupt recently.

The president of the Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League Brian Rix said the news of the "freak" accident had hit the clubs hard and they would be passing around donation buckets at all six games this weekend.

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