GIV­ING BACK

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - FRONT PAGE - PA­TRICK GEE

AF­TER 10 months on a wait­ing list for two new lungs, au­thor Jo­hanne Gal­li­her had all but given up hope that she would reach her next birth­day.

A vi­ral lung in­fec­tion about four years ago left her with only 25 per cent of her lungs func­tion­ing.

“I was pretty much an in­valid — I needed a lot of help, peo­ple to clean and help me groom my­self,” Miss Gal­li­her said.

Her doc­tor had told her she was on her “way out” when she got the news she would be re­ceiv­ing two new lungs.

“I just spent five months in Melbourne get­ting the beau­ti­ful gift,” she said.

“It made me come back to Tassie and re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate be­ing in Tas­ma­nia af­ter five months in Melbourne.”

Miss Gal­li­her is now back on her feet, has just turned 66 and wants to give back to the com­mu­nity.

She con­tacted chil­dren’s can­cer char­ity Red Kite and ar­ranged to fundraise for them.

“I de­cided to cre­ate short story mag­a­zines and put to­gether the novel­las into lit­tle book­lets.

“It’s not for profit so peo­ple can have hard copies or e-copies of my writ­ing for a $5-$10 do­na­tion to Red Kite.”

Miss Gal­li­her will be sell­ing her sto­ries at lo­cal mar­kets, start­ing at the High­lands Bush­fest in Both­well on Novem­ber 18 and 19.

The for­mer speech pathol­o­gist moved to Aus­tralia from the US 30 years ago.

“I can­not get over the beau­ti­ful health sys­tem here,” she said. “I feel like I’ve got­ten a sec­ond chance at life.”

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