In the Beginning – Jodie McRae
“As Nickelback’s says ‘if today was your last day – what would you do different’? One thing is for sure I wouldn’t change a thing! Being part of this and giving back to others is the best feeling in the world.” Jodie McRae.
Jodie McRae was a Lismore-based mother of two children, Kaela and Jake, partner to Reece, a sister, aunt and friend to many. Jodie was the owner of three local businesses: Beauty Spot at the Square, Price Attack – Lismore Square, North Coast Hair and Beauty Supplies. Jodie also owned and operated two businesses on the Tweed and Gold Coast.
In May 2013 Jodie was diagnosed with a rare, aggressive form of triple negative breast cancer. After being told she was cancer free in December 2013, Jodie was subsequently diagnosed with secondary breast cancer in September 2014. Jodie fought hard but lost her battle on 1 October 2016 at age 43.
In 2015 over 200 people joined team “Jodie’s Inspiration” at Mother’s Day Classic in Ballina as a sign of solidarity not just with Jodie but all cancer patients and their families. This day was influential in Jodie’s decision to build her own charity following the wave of support she received on the day.
In mid-2015 Jodie, alongside her closest supporters, founded Jodie’s Inspiration Ltd, a not-for-profit organisation, whose aim it is to raise much-needed funds to help the oncology units at Lismore Base and St Vincent’s Hospitals. More broadly, Jodie’s mission was to improve the treatment experience of cancer patients far and wide, plus promote the importance of early cancer detection and diagnosis.
Through her charity, Jodie was extremely committed to providing medical equipment that will make a positive difference to the treatment experience of cancer patients, particularly equipment that may alleviate some of the emotional trauma associated with fighting the disease.
In late 2015, Jodie’s Inspiration was honoured to hand over two cold cap therapy machines, valued at over $73,000, to the oncology unit at St Vincent’s Hospital in Lismore. Thanks to the generous support of the local community in 2016, Jodie’s Inspiration is working to secure the purchase of an equivalent sum of equipment for the cancer centre at the Lismore Base Hospital.
Long term, Jodie’s dream was to establish a palliative care house where people could die with dignity beyond the confines of the clinical hospital environment. The Board of Jodie’s Inspiration is currently considering the viability of this dream.
Jodie’s selfless dedication to the needs of others did not go unnoticed. She was named the 2016 Lismore Citizen of the Year and the 2016 ‘REX Airlines’ NSW Regional Woman of the Year. These awards, whilst never personally sought by Jodie, serve as tangible reminders of the high esteem in which she was held.
Jodie’s personal motto was “Live Life Large!” and, despite her ongoing health challenges, she remained committed to giving expression to this motto each and every day. Jodie was very dedicated to assisting those battling cancer in whatever way she can. Her example, and the dignity with which she faced her fight, will always inspire others to Live Life Large!
Jodie’s life was, and legacy continues to be, truly inspirational.
You can help Jodie’s dream stay alive by donating online below.
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