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Libby*

Like many Australian families, there is a strong tradition of service in Libby’s* family.

Her grandfather served in the military, as did her husband Chris*, along with his grandfather and brother.
But it was her husband’s service to Australia that has taken such a toll on Libby and her four children: and most of all, on this brave former paratrooper.

“I’m proud of my husband’s service, but the physical injuries and the post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) he suffers as a result have taken a real toll on our family”

It is hard for anyone who has not served in a theatre of war to fully appreciate the long-term cost of war and service.

Chris served our nation with distinction for 16 years. He was deployed three times – and due to his service, he now lives with debilitating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The couple’s children – Liam* (19), twins Ethan* and Mia* (16) and 13-year-old Ruby* – have also borne the cost of their father’s service to Australia.

“When Chris was discharged from the Army in 2018 due to his health issues, everything just fell apart,” Libby recalls.

“That’s when it all became quite serious and, in desperation, I posted on Facebook asking if anyone could suggest where we might get help.
“Someone suggested I contact Legacy, which surprised me. I didn’t know that they helped families like mine. I just thought Legacy only helped widows.”

In the six years since, Legacy has been there for Libby and her family – thanks to your help.
“From the moment I reached out to Legacy, they have shown genuine interest in my family’s well-being. Even from the earliest days, they would ring regularly to check in on me to make sure I was okay. I remember one day they had called to check in and they could just tell that I wasn’t okay. So they turned up at my door just to give me a hug and check if the kids or I needed anything.”

“I can’t imagine how we would have coped without Legacy these past six years”

 

Libby says “The emotional support is everything… but they’ve helped in so many other practical ways. During lockdown, when the kids had to home-school, I was beside myself. It was hard enough managing to pay for food and essentials bills: there was no way we could afford laptops for the kids.”
The stress of equipping their children for home-schooling – as so many Australians have experienced – placed impossible strains on their finances. Once again, because of the kindness of people like you, we were able to provide Liam, Ethan, Mia, and Ruby with basic laptops so they could continue with their studies.

“We simply could not have scratched together the funds to do that ourselves.”

Then six months ago the family were hit with another blow when Libby suffered a heart attack. The family was in crisis with Libby out of action, but Legacy stepped up to ensure Chris and the children were supported as Libby underwent emergency heart bypass surgery.

“Legacy immediately stepped in to help my husband while I was in hospital: giving him food vouchers to help ease the financial burden and checking that the kids had what they needed.”

The support provided to Libby’s family has also allowed her children to attend Legacy kid’s camps. These camps are about so much more than giving veterans’ children the chance to enjoy outdoor activities and personal development opportunities
They are a place where Libby’s kids have connected with peers who truly understand what they have gone through. At camp, they can freely talk about the emotional stress of living with their father’s PTSD and lean on the camp leaders for guidance and advice.

“I know my children would have missed out on so much if it wasn’t for the ongoing support of Legacy”

Your donations to Legacy have the power to do so much good for families struggling due to the personal service of a parent or partner.

And they are so incredibly grateful that people continue to support the work of Legacy. As Libby told us recently

“I don’t think ‘thank you’ expresses just how grateful our family is to everyone who supports Legacy.”

 

*Names changed and stock images used for privacy and protection.

Help Legacy keep our promise

Support families like Libby’s by donating to Legacy today. To a struggling mother and children like Libby, Liam, Mia and Ruby, your generosity is the promise of a lifetime of support.

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Legatees are Legacy’s most dedicated volunteers. They commit to supporting families and build deep personal relationships to help them thrive.

Legatee relationships provide relief. Knowing that there is 24/7 comfort available for families like Melanie’s when they need it.

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