News

Forever wandering: Josh’s legacy continues

IN LOVING MEMORY: Southgate teenager Josh Allen was a passionate soccer player who loved the Western Sydney Wanderers. Photo: Contributed
IN LOVING MEMORY: Southgate teenager Josh Allen was a passionate soccer player who loved the Western Sydney Wanderers. Photo: Contributed

JOSHUA Bede Allen was a passionate, talented young sportsman who loved his team, the Western Sydney Wanderers.

After a year-long battle with an inoperable tumour, the Southgate teenager passed away last year on his 16th birthday.

A year on, his parents Greg Allen and Julie Revis hope to raise awareness for more research into children's cancer, in an effort to stop other parents going through the same thing.

From an early age, Josh emerged as a budding actor, scoring roles in school plays and musicals as he went through Grafton Primary and Grafton High School.

He was a goalkeeper with the Westlawn Football Club, played cricket with Tucabia-Copmanhurst Club where he opened for batting and was chosen as an emerging Blues player. He also played hockey with the Barb's, futsal for the North Coast and rugby for his school.

On September 23, 2013 he was diagnosed with a brain stem tumour (DIPG).

Radiation, chemotherapy, and a trial treatment followed at Westmead Children's Hospital in Sydney, but unfortunately the aggressive tumours did not respond, and his parents' "beautiful, brave boy" was taken away, surrounded by his extended family.

Tomorrow marks a year since his death, and what would have been his 17th birthday.

Each day since has been a struggle for his parents, who see him every day of the week in photos, places he went, and familiar faces.

Whenever they get a chance, Greg and Julie watch the Western Sydney Wanderers play and as part of Josh's legacy forged a connection between the team and Ronald McDonald House. The Wanderers are now ambassadors for the charity, and give funds from one game each year to the cause.

The couple are also passionate about raising funds for research into childhood cancers, after meeting so many other families at Ronald McDonald House and the hospital in similar situations.

"You feel like you're one person up here but (at Westmead Hospital) you're one amongst others," Julie said.

"They just would be beautiful little Australians if they got a chance to grow up. To lose your child is just, there are no words."

Last weekend, the couple attended Australia's inaugural CureFest event in Sydney, which aims to give a unified voice to children with cancer.

Josh's story also appears on a short documentary called The Truth 365, made to inform the public of the critical need for funding for paediatric cancer research.

"We're trying to get it out there and let people know there's next to no funding for research into these cancers in children," Mr Allen said.

Tomorrow, Josh's family and friends will hold a dinner in Josh's memory from 6pm at the Crown Hotel.

His schoolmates at Grafton High School will also dress in green, Josh's favourite colour.

Mum Julie Revis said his family would love to see everyone who knew him, and those who had helped them through, at the dinner.

Josh is greatly missed by his closest siblings Elysha, Meridie and Todd, grandparents, aunts, uncles, nephew Jayden, niece Cienna, and mates.

"We will never forget his cheeky smile and just wanting to be with his mates and family. Josh touched the hearts of all who came in contact with him in some way or another.

"We all miss Josh so much, shedding a tear every day because he is not here, but we are forever wandering with our beautiful boy."

Topics:  cancer, children, editors picks, western sydney wanderers




Truck driver lucky to escape rollover

HEAVY LIFT: A tow truck operator works to move a truck out of a ditch on Summerland Way.

Grafton Heavy Towing overturned truck after fire risk assessment

Palace Arcade facelift brightens Maclean CBD

Manager of River Cafe Alison Edsell and owner of Bad Habits Len McComish in front of the Palace Arcade's new façade in Maclean.

Palace Arcade facade refurbishment almost complete.

Is Brian Harrigan the next mayor of Clarence Shire?

CIVIC DISORDER: Clarence Valley mayor Richie Williamson is not quite sure what to make of Brian Harrigan, who claims to be the new mayor in town and is spruiking his ideas for Australia Day.

A new leader is rising out of the woodwork

Latest deals and offers

Thy Art Is Murder are killing it

See Thy Art is Murder on their killer tour happening right now. Photo Contributed

We talk with Thy Art is Murder about touring, babies, and new music

Date announced for Prince tribute concert

A Prince tribute concert will take place later this year

Matt Damon is taking a break from acting

Matt Damon is taking a break to spend time with his family

Is Brian Harrigan the next mayor of Clarence Shire?

CIVIC DISORDER: Clarence Valley mayor Richie Williamson is not quite sure what to make of Brian Harrigan, who claims to be the new mayor in town and is spruiking his ideas for Australia Day.

A new leader is rising out of the woodwork

Police foiled terrifying 1m plot to kidnap Katie Price

Police foiled a £1 million plot to kidnap Katie Price and her family

REVIEW: A very loud nod to the original Ghostbusters

WHO YOU GONNA CALL? Kate McKinnon as Jullian Holtzmann in Ghostbusters which is playing at the Yamba Cinema.

New film pays homage to terrible CGI ghosts, ridiculous plot lines

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started