Kym & Kaylea Allcroft
Growing up with a father who had served, the ADF had always had a central presence in Kym Allcroft’s life.
It was, in fact, through this connection that she would meet her boyfriend, Adam, whose father had become close to Kym’s during their time serving together. Kym and Adam had grown up together as family friends, and their shared experience allowed their relationship to blossom.
The day Adam found out that he had been accepted into the Navy, I found out that I was pregnant with our first child, Kaylea.
Kym, who worked for the ADF at the time, knew how interesting the ADF lifestyle was going to be for their growing family. Two years later, Kym and Adam welcomed their second child, Nathan, into the family. Adam was in the Navy for 6 years, and among other deployments, visited the Gulf and Iraq.
Shortly after discharging, Adam was tragically killed on his bicycle, when a car hit him on the road near his home. At the time, Kaylea was just 10, and Nathan just 8 years old.
Just like that, I had to look after two children on my own, which was not easy.
The young family was put in touch with Legacy soon after Adam’s tragic accident. They were introduced to their new Legatee, Dianne, who they quickly formed a great bond and friendship with. Kym and Dianne became fast-friends, and enjoyed taking the children on Legacy camps.
[Our Legatee] Dianne became our friend in and out of Legacy. We were able to call her for anything, she was just there for us, no matter what, for many years.
Kym went to various functions and holidays with Legacy over the years, and was able to meet others within the Legacy family. “A lot of others were in very similar situations, and a lot were in very different situations, but more or less we could all completely relate. We made wonderful friendships that we have been able to enjoy to this day.”
Legacy really does feel like family.
Fast forward 11 years, and Legacy has become the support network that has helped Kim and her two children through their tough times. Kim speaks fondly of the other families she has met through Legacy, as well as the staff and Legatees who have supported her through her journey: “Before and after events, the ladies would all text each other, saying ‘I can’t wait to catch up with you again!’ which was really lovely.
You’re really able to lean on the people that you meet, and in turn support them at the same time. When we would go on Legacy holidays together, we would chat non-stop. We spent all of our time bonding and developing a path forward together. It was quite incredible to get along so well with such a large group, and so special to feel like we were a part of a family bigger than our own.”
It was all so new to us, and Legacy was able to help us through it all.
Legacy was also able to provide educational support for Kaylea and Nathan. The kids received pocket money, and were able to get financial assistance to help pay for stationary, uniforms, sports and school camps. “Nathan played football at the time, and Kaylea loved to dance and play netball.
Legacy was able to help provide those opportunities for my kids. I wouldn’t have been able to support the kids in the same way on my own.”
Other things that Kim and her family needed included kitchen appliances. “There was no dad, and no second income, so Legacy was able to assist so that it wouldn’t become a burden for me as a single parent, financially.”
Legacy was also there for the family emotionally and psychologically.
Kym, Kaylea and Nathan have also been able to participate in various Legacy events. Kym explains, “Any way that we are able to give back to Legacy, we do.” They were heavily involved in the Invictus Games when they came to Australia, and have also contributed to campaigns, such as Anzac Day and Legacy Week. “We’ve been able to do quite a few events with Legacy, including laying the wreath during the opening ceremony of Legacy Week, and we have presented speeches at the Cenotaph during the Dawn Service on Anzac Day.”
Kaylea proudly remembers presenting a sprig of rosemary to the Governor in 2018 at the opening of the Sydney Anzac Day march.
“We’ve been able to do quite a few events with Legacy, including laying the wreath during the opening ceremony of Legacy Week, and we have presented speeches at the Cenotaph during the Dawn Service on Anzac Day.”
Kym remembers, “Those trips in the early years after Kaylea and Nathan’s Dad’s passing… they created a real sisterhood for me, and I loved to be able to connect with other women who were going through a similar situation.
“Legacy has been able to do so much for us, and we are eternally grateful.”