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Special Echuca trip for sisters

Sisters Trish Barron, Anne Davies-Rieniets and Margaret Buckland came to Echuca to fulfil Anne’s dying wish of a ride on a paddleboat

IVY WISE March 31, 2014 4:58am

Anne Davies-Rieniets.


A woman’s dying wish to spend her final days in peaceful surroundings with her sisters was fulfilled in Echuca-Moama at the weekend.

Ballarat’s Anne Davies-Rieniets, along with sisters Margaret Buckland and Trish Barron, was treated to a two-night stay at Moama’s Madison Spa Resort and a trip on the PS Emmylou, through an organisation which grants wishes for terminally ill adults.

‘‘I just wanted to go somewhere peaceful with my sisters before I pass away,’’ Anne said.

‘‘I’ve never had a holiday before and I’ve never been to Echuca before.

‘‘I just love the beauty and serenity here.’’

A teary Anne said her ride on the paddlesteamer and tour through Port of Echuca’s Discovery Centre were spectacular.

‘‘I’ve enjoyed every moment here. It’s all starting to sink in today, especially everyone’s kindness and I feel so grateful and humble,’’ she said yesterday.

‘‘This is such a beautiful place.

‘‘Our time here is something I will always be able to look back with fond memories.’’

Anne, 56, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in August 2012.

After several months of chemotherapy in Melbourne, her health deteriorated and she is now receiving palliative care in Ballarat.

Anne’s support crew at the Austin Hospital nominated her through The Orange Pigeon.

‘‘I feel very privileged and humbled to be here and I want to thank The Orange Pigeon for making it happen,’’ Anne said.

‘‘In my situation, I’m on a pension, so I could never afford to go away.

‘‘Making this available to people like me is amazing.

‘‘It gives you a little lift, which I need.

‘‘You certainly need family around at a time like this, so it’s special to be able to spend some quality time with my sisters.’’

Sister Trish, who has spent the past 6 months with Anne, said the wish could not have come at a better time.

‘‘It’s great to get out of the hospital walls,’’ she said.

‘‘We also want to have some nice memories with Anne that are not at the hospital.’’

The Orange Pigeon is the only organisation of its kind in Australia and has provided 33 wishes since its inception in 2012.

To request a wish or make a donation, visit www.orangepigeon.com.au

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