Black­wa­ter home razed to the ground in a mat­ter of min­utes

Central Queensland News - - FRONT PAGE - Aden Stokes Aden.Stokes@cqnews.com.au

❝ I re­build, can fur­ni­ture can be re­placed but mem­o­ries can’t.

— Ca­t­rina Har­vey

A LAST-minute de­ci­sion to wake Black­wa­ter’s Ca­t­rina Har­vey may well have saved her life.

The mother of three was sleep­ing off a mi­graine and nose bleed at 2pm on Sun­day when her hus­band thought to wake her to have some­thing to eat.

The fam­ily walked out their front door soon af­ter and by 3pm their home and all its con­tents – in­clud­ing pre­cious pho­to­graphs – had burnt to the ground.

“I don’t han­dle hav­ing mi­graines or headaches very well, so my sons call me the dragon,” Mrs Har­vey said.

“They said, ‘Dad, don’t wake the dragon, she’s got a headache, just leave the dragon alone.’

“My hus­band, An­drew, said, ‘No, we bet­ter go and wake Mum up, we aren’t sure if she has had some­thing to eat yet and she can come around and we’ll have lunch to­gether.’

“We left the house at 2.30pm and by 3pm the house had burnt to the ground.

“My heart goes out to the neigh­bour that rang to no­tify us of the fire, he thought me and my two youngest sons were still in the house at the time burn­ing alive.

“I couldn’t imag­ine the men­tal an­guish he went through.”

Mrs Har­vey re­called the scari­est mo­ment of the fire was dread­ing find­ing their el­dest son’s beloved dog

dead, a thought she de­scribed as un­bear­able.

“We had Rose chained up on the back ve­randa so she wouldn’t chew the clothes out on the line, but af­ter the fire erupted it fright­ened her and she man­aged to slip her

col­lar and es­cape,” she said.

“We found out three hours later she had sur­vived as she made her way back home, the kids were re­lieved be­cause that’s what they were fo­cused on.

“She’s safe and loving all

the ex­tra at­ten­tion.”

Mrs Har­vey said they had been in the house since De­cem­ber 24, 2004, and it was the only home her youngest son had ever known.

“I can do with­out ev­ery­thing in the house but I no longer have any pho­to­graphs,” she said.

“I can re­build, fur­ni­ture can be re­placed but mem­o­ries can’t.”

Mrs Har­vey said the sup­port shown to the fam­ily had been very hum­bling and much ap­pre­ci­ated.

If you wish to do­nate and help raise funds to get the Har­vey fam­ily back on their feet, see the Go­FundMe page at www.go­fundme.com/ sup­port-the-har­vey-fam­ily.

If you have in­for­ma­tion for po­lice, phone Po­licelink on 131 444. You can re­port in­for­ma­tion about crime anony­mously to Crime Stop­pers on 1800 333 000 or via www.crimestop­pers qld.com.au.


ALL GONE: The Har­vey fam­ily has lost ev­ery­thing af­ter a fire de­stroyed their home in Black­wa­ter.

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