On Friday the 15th November 2019 Chris Poulos a 32 year old father, husband, son and friend to many had his life changed forever.
It started just like any regular day. In the late afternoon after work, Chris went for a surf at Dudley Beach in Newcastle, like he so often did. However, on this occasion, Chris tragically fell off his board and hit his head on a sandbar. The impact knocked Chris unconscious. Was it not for the heroic actions of other surfers in the water that afternoon, we may not have Chris here with us today. The surfers took immediate action, dragging an unconscious Chris onto the beach and calling 000. Shortly after, paramedics arrived. With suspected spinal injuries, the Westpac Rescue Helicopter airlifted Chris to the Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney, where he was admitted to the Intensive Care Ward of the Spinal Injuries Unit.
Early Saturday morning, Chris went into theatre to stabilise the damaged vertebrae in his neck. After surgery, Chris’ wife Alanna and their family were delivered the devastating update that Chris was diagnosed as a quadriplegic.
Chris, Alanna and their two beautiful boys; 3 year old Hunter and 8 month old Tyson, are now looking at a long road of hospital stays and rehab treatments. The family live in Newcastle and now face the reality that Chris will spend the next few months in Sydney while he undergoes further treatment, leaving Alanna to try and juggle a sense of normality for her boys, whilst also being there daily to support Chris.
Chris has an amazing passion and zest for life. He is a proud family man and a true mate to his circle of friends. He ensures everyone in his life is cared for and looked after and is always the first one to offer a helping hand or be there for a good old chat. Chris has always had a passion for helping those in need. This passion led Chris to pursue a career within the Disabilities sector, working as the Regional Manager for Disability Services Australia, to strive to make a difference to the lives of those living with a disability in the Newcastle area.
Chris, Alanna and their two young boys, Hunter and Tyson, now need our support moving forward during this heartbreaking and challenging time. This beautiful family has a long road ahead and we hope that with the kindness, help and generosity of others, we can help ease their financial burden so that they can focus on Chris’ strength and determination to defy his life changing diagnosis.#CompassionforChris