RATTLES HITS THE ROAD FOR CANCER RESEARCH
If you are travelling along the roads of Australia enjoying yourself and making some memories, you will more than likely come across someone else who is doing something very worthwhile for a memory, and I have to say I really admire him as will you too.
Ian (Rattles) Retallack is currently travelling around all of Australia (from Bunbury and back) by horse and buggy, averaging 20-25 km per day. He is doing this to raise funds for Cancer Research, and fulfilling a promise to his mother, who died of cancer, and his brother, who has bowel cancer. Over the last year and a half he has donated $52, 410, and intends to raise $1-million.
He has about three and a half years to complete this journey. ‘Rattles’ has very limited funds and cannot work during this long journey. But, everywhere he goes he is more than warmly welcomed. Folk have given hay for his horses, food for his dog and a place to rest his head after a long day, and that’s what the great Aussie spirit of helping is all about.
Ian Retallack is just a humble Aussie bloke and as he says money raised for cancer research will help those in need to live, and cherish every moment in life with family and friends. The following, in his own words, is why he is doing this long hard journey.
“My beautiful mother battled cancer for 10 years, then it all came back. But mum had this idea that life goes on and enjoyed every moment of it. She walked around as if nothing was wrong. It all started when mum put a patch on her breast for hormones that were meant to help, not give you cancer.
“After mum had her breast removed it did not faze her, she had the chemotherapy and kept on going as you do. The family knew that mum had the spirit to keep on going and she did, for another ten years. The cancer came back, but this time it was in her bones so she could not walk very well. On her 50th wedding anniversary I then told her to go to the doctor, but she said that she would be okay. My father had told her to see the doctor many times before I told her. She eventually went and the doctor told her she had cancer in the bone of her leg. This meant an operation to remove the bone from her leg and replace it with a pin. She was up and walking straight away. Mum was tough, I brought her a cane she never used.
“As time went by mum’s bones took a toll, the cancer had spread to her back bone and finally mum had to be put in a wheel chair. She liked been pushed around. We took her to shopping centres and all over. Mum did never let us see that the cancer worried her, she had the attitude that she would not worry anyone, she didn’t want sympathy. What kept her happy was that we were happy. She always made sure that we were all ok, she loved all of us.
Mum died two days before her 70th birthday, so we all got together and had a birthday for her, flowers on the table and the family together for the first time in years.
“Just before my mum passed away, my brother Steve was diagnosed with Bowel Cancer. All he thinks about is that he has reached the end, but I know and feel that he will be okay. He has been through chemo and has not been told the outcome yet. He advised me that I should get tested as well. I booked in on the 13th August 2013 for the test.
“I will always try to help others as best as I can, so this is why I’m making this trip around Australia with a wagon and two horses, Mattnamaras Band (Matt) and El-Padrino (Paddy) given to me by Willis Racing and Pacing and my dog Russ given to me by Nathan Nelson.
“All this is to help raise as much money for research as we possibly can. Let’s hope that it will help those in need to live and cherish every moment of life with their family and friends”, Ian says.
At the time of writing this, ‘Rattles’ is resting up in the Coffs Harbour area of N.S.W., but will be heading towards the Tamworth Country Music Festival which is on from January 16th to 25th as part of his long journey. I know many of you are heading to this event, so when you come across ‘Rattles’, please dig deep for this very worthy cause.
If you don’t happen to come across him you can donate directly through his website which has a direct donation payment system to cancer research, and a site on “gofundme”, that assists in his personal travel expenses, as he is doing this journey on very limited funds, and obviously cannot work during the trip.
Whats Up Downunder wishes Rattles safe travels. His aim is to raise $1-million and with everyone’s help, we know he can do it!
By: John Westbury, Photo’s: Ian Retallack
To stay up to date with Rattles travels – CLICK HERE
To Donate (please do!) – CLICK HERE