This is my nephew, Tim, with Chelsea and their beautiful dog Leah.
On the night of Sunday 6 August 2017 they lost everything in a house fire during a fierce winter storm in the Snowy Mountains, they did not have insurance.
Thankfully Tim and Chelsea were not home at the time of the fire, neither was Leah. Their 10 week old kitten, William Shakespurr, was at home and has not been seen since.
Tim and Chelsea are just 20 years old. In 2015, shortly after Tim turned 18 he had saved enough money, entirely on his own, for a deposit for an apartment in his home town of Jindabyne. In mid 2016 they decided to build an “off the grid” home for themselves on a property Chelsea owns with her father. Tim and Chelsea built their home entirely on their own, from the ground up. They moved in as soon as the fireplace was in, in the middle of winter. While living at the property their menagerie grew to include 2 goats, 3 pigs and 4 chickens. All of them survived the fire.
Tim is an accomplished musician. Aside from all of their clothing, household items, furniture etc, Tim also lost the piano he had had since he was 4 years old, 7 guitars and a ukulele as well as all of his other musical equipment. He worked anywhere up to 4 jobs at any one time from age 14 and 9 months so that he could pay for his instruments. Tim used music as therapy. He played his piano and his guitars every single day. He gave local kids guitar lessons.
My heart is breaking for this amazing kid. This is not the first tragedy of his young life. In 2008 his father was involved in a near fatal car accident when Tim was just 11 and his little sister Rosie only 8 years old. In 2010 Tim and his sister were both diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. On 15 March 2013, when Tim was 15 and his sister was 12, their father committed suicide. Tim and his sister and their mother (my sister) were living in Sydney at the time however they were left destitute and moved to Jindabyne because they could no longer afford to live in Sydney. A few weeks ago Tim and his sister lost their grandfather, my Dad. Tim is such a smart, determined and independent kid that has had his world torn apart over and over again. Now, he has lost everything he has worked so hard for.