Sonya Pillar paints Coco-Lii Serafim's face  at the Luke Matthews fundraiser on Sunday.
Sonya Pillar paints Coco-Lii Serafim's face at the Luke Matthews fundraiser on Sunday. Liana Turner

Town bands together to help Matthews family

TRAGEDY truly can be the catalyst that brings a community together.

This much was evident when Wallangarra put on a great show to help the family of injured Granite Belt man Luke Matthews on Sunday afternoon.

Mr Matthews, 21, broke his neck after jumping from a Brisbane Jetty last month.

With ever-increasing hospital bills, the community has banded together to help out.

Organiser James Small said he was pleased with the turnout for the event.

Having known the Matthews' family well, he said there was no hesitation in jumping to the family's aid.

He said the incident had rocked the community and those close to Mr Matthews.

"It's been really good,” Mr Small said.

He said the bands and other volunteers had donated their time for the concert and family fun afternoon, which featured talent like Phil Emmanuel, local talent and other activities, including a jumping castle and face-painting.

Mr Matthews' step-father, Fred Garth, said it meant a lot to the family to see the community get behind them in this way.

"It's really great because the community gets together when it's bad times,” he said.

"When it's bad times, little towns stick together.”

Mr Garth said his stepson had recently been relocated from intensive care to the spinal ward.

He said Mr Matthews was expected to be there for the next nine to 12 months.

"He'd been in ICU since (the accident),” he said.

Mr Matthews' mother, Beck, has been with him in Brisbane's PA Hospital.

The total funds being raised had not been calculated at the time of publication.

So far, $2,410 has been raised for the family through a Go Fund Me page.

Stanthorpe Border Post

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