It is Leanne de Toerkenczy’s last day at TAFE today. She leaves to live on the Gold Coast where her fiancé Dave lives.
It is Leanne de Toerkenczy’s last day at TAFE today. She leaves to live on the Gold Coast where her fiancé Dave lives. Emma Channon

Love follows hardship

LEANNE de Toerkenczy has had a difficult couple of years.

Discovering her mother had thyroid cancer and then losing her just six months after, was quickly followed by her own diagnosis of - and recovery from - the same disease.

Now, the single Warwick mum's life has taken a second turn for the better. She is leaving the Rose City after 10 years for a sea change - and to get married.

Ms de Toerkenczy has made her mark during her time in Warwick, playing an important role in the Southern Downs Sculpture Symposium and with Warwick TAFE. She said leaving the city brought up a mixture of feelings.

"I was a single mum when I chose to move to Warwick. I figured the country would be a good place to raise a child and I was right," she said.

"I came here for the (general manager's position) in the Southern Downs Tourist Association and they had a reshuffle and my job wasn't needed, so I set up my own marketing business."

It was through her business that Ms de Toerkenczy became involved in the sculpture symposium, before the shocking cancer diagnosis for both her mother and herself.

It was when she was filling out hospital forms for her surgery she realised she wanted someone else in her life.

"I went to an online dating service and met Dave," she said.

"I knew when I met him ... it was like I had known him my whole life.

"We're pretty much inseparable."

The pair are now engaged and plan to marry next year.

In the meantime, Ms de Toerkenczy is packing up and moving to the Gold Coast with daughter Kaitlyn, to see more of Dave.

But she is looking forward to returning to the Rose City for visits.


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