Jarrah Jones and his family before a rare illness made its presence known.
Jarrah Jones and his family before a rare illness made its presence known.

Red Rocket to the rescue for family of brave Valley teen

THE Mary Valley Rattler team will host a FUNdraising day on board the The Red Rocket on Sunday March 8, to help raise money for the Amamoor family of Jarrah Jones, who was diagnosed with Wilson’s disease in September 2018 at the age of 13.

READ MORE: Glimmer of hope in brave Jarrah’s battle

Jarrah Jones back in Amamoor again.
Jarrah Jones back in Amamoor again.

Wilson’s disease is a rare inherited disease that affects approximately one in 30,000 people worldwide. Prior to Jarrah’s diagnosis, his hobbies included running, acting and creating YouTube videos.

READ MORE: Jarrah’s fight for life

As a result of the disease Jarrah’s speech and mobility have been severely impacted. Jarrah has undergone many surgeries and is now confined to a wheelchair. Significant home renovations were required to accommodate wheelchair accessibility which have recently been completed.

“Needless to say we can appreciate that it must be a difficult journey for Jarrah and his family,” Mary Valley Rattler general manager Mike Green said.

Amamoor's Jarrah Jones on his last day at the Queensland Children's Hospital where he had been for more than a year.
Amamoor's Jarrah Jones on his last day at the Queensland Children's Hospital where he had been for more than a year.

“After speaking with the family we understand that their current fundraising project to purchase a purpose built vehicle would be of great value in transporting Jarrah to medical appointments and providing an opportunity for him to get out and about in general.

“We wanted to support the fundraising efforts with the offer of one of our train services. We are hopeful that we will fill this train at $100 per person which will raise $4000 towards this much needed vehicle.”

Enhanced accessibility for wheelchairs

Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 attending the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT
Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 attending the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT

The Red Rocket has been recently reconfigured with some seating taken out to accommodate two wheelchairs on board.

“Being accessible is so important, and we are very pleased to also announce that we will have capacity to accommodate wheelchairs on board our steam service by Easter 2020,” added Mr. Green.

“Heritage carriage 1071 is currently being reconfigured to accommodate two wheelchairs per journey. This has been a priority project for our team and we are delighted to be able to make this available in the coming months. An assisted access carriage has been identified and funding is being sought to enable the renovation of this carriage.

Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 and his two siblings Akasha, 11 and Calypso, 8 pictured with teachers Jacki Robertson, Sascha Heredia and Annette Keogh who all go to the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT
Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 and his two siblings Akasha, 11 and Calypso, 8 pictured with teachers Jacki Robertson, Sascha Heredia and Annette Keogh who all go to the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT

“Having the capacity to take wheelchairs on board the Rattler ensures the whole community can enjoy the full heritage experience at the Gympie and Amamoor Stations and on board the popular Rattler Tasting Train and Rattler Picnic Train experiences, as well as the steam services over the six days that the Rattler currently operate.”

The Rattler Red Rocket FUNdraising Journey rolls out of the historic Gympie Station at 9:30am on the Sunday. Guests will enjoy on-board morning tea as the train meanders out to Amamoor where The Friends of Amamoor community group will be cooking up a sausage sizzle whilst the train turns on the heritage turntable before guests hop back on board to the heritage Dagun Station with a stop for wine and cheese tasting provided by the Dagun Community Group.

Tickets are $100 per person including return rail journey, on board morning tea, sausage sizzle at Amamoor, wine and cheese tasting at Dagun and a goodie bag. Full proceeds to Jarrah’s family.

Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 and his two siblings Akasha, 11 and Calypso, 8 who all go to the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT
Queensland Children's Hospital. Jarrah Jones, 14 and his two siblings Akasha, 11 and Calypso, 8 who all go to the Queensland Children's Hospital school. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT