Small towns are usually known for being a bit gossipy and the occasional back stabbing, but trumping all of that is their propensity to have your back when you are in trouble.
Paul Braun passed away on 12 May, 2015, leaving Bec and four beautiful kids, Tyler 13, Lanah 11, Lateesha 7 and Dakota 6.
Baffle Creek Sport and Rec were struck by the sheer number of similar tragedies in recent years, and they wanted to do something for Bec, and also for other families dealing with trauma. And so, the inaugural ‘Brauny’s Run/Walk for the Kids’ was born and the community rallied wholeheartedly in support.
The event was held at the same time as the monthly Baffle Creek markets, with 125 runners, and another 50 or so spectators gathering from Gladstone, Bundaberg, Agnes Water and the local area to help Paul’s family and others struggling to heal.
Held in conjunction with ‘RUOk’ day, the aim of the event was to let people who may be struggling know that there is a community of people with open hearts and listening ears that want to help.
Huge thanks must go to people like Donna Slaven who worked tirelessly on all the artwork for weeks and weeks.
Lana and Dave from Parker’s Liquid Waste who’d run out of portaloos but were so keen to help, they went and purchased two more so that they could help.
And Grom and DJ from Reef2Beach surf shop in Agnes who, as life long friends of Brauny, donated over $500 of gifts for the kids. Cheryl, Guy and Michaleigh from Wreck Rock Café who donated $200 of eats, and Lady Musgrave Tours who donated 5 trips, and Neil Mergard from 1770 LARC Tours with free trips for the whole family.
Then there were the Hoveys from Baffle Rural and Fishing Supplies who, as well as donating a big gift certificate, helped with the setup and take down. There were others like Sandy from Mopheadz who just said ‘how can I help?’, and then donated $200 of quality hair care. Or Jeff and Jenny from the convenience store who without anyone asking, generously donated bottled water for every grateful finisher.
And big thanks must go to local state member, Stephen Bennett, and Gladstone Regional Councillor Rick Hansen. There are not many votes in the Baffle, surely not worth the time they put into helping the community, and yet they are constantly putting their hands in their pockets for this and that, and it didn’t stop them turning up, completing the run, and doing anything they were asked, as well as making personal donations to Bec and family.
But back to the run, because there were some great stories. Ladies 5k winner Amy Stuth from Agnes won her first race and is also the wife of paramedic Mick Stuth who attended Paul.
Men’s winner Chris Palfrey and age group winner Penny Palfrey also jetted in from Agnes to take trophies. Chris winning 50-59 age group as well as the overall win. The over 60’s were won by Terrance Freebody from Gin Gin and Yvonne Thompson from Agnes.
The Under 13 boys was a fight to the finish with ‘Maximus Power’. Believe it or not after 5k of battling Maximus Banks pipped Maximus Nowland by a minimus.
In the 2k, Baffle’s best hope for Olympic glory in about 2024 was the amazing Lillielle Kelly, 10, who after winning her age group in the 1k led all comers for most of the race, before Jordan Hovey, 13, chased her down in the final straight.
The 1k had some budding shining lights in the 4-and-unders with Neveah Kelly and Regal Smart taking the money, whilst Lakari Turner and Liam Hovey won the 7-and-unders. Lillielle and Isaac Sbresni won the 10-and-unders.
Well done everyone and hope you’ll join with the Baffle community again next year for Brauny!
Pictured above: Amy Stuth receiving her trophy from Councillor Rick Hansen,