Event organiser Mark Hunter takes the plunge to raise money for his good mate Shane Shorten.
Event organiser Mark Hunter takes the plunge to raise money for his good mate Shane Shorten.

Friends rally for injured driver

ALREADY on the road to recovery just a month after the truck accident that claimed both his legs, Supergas driver Shane Shorten says he has a lot to be thankful for.

Celebrating the first night of his release from hospital with his friends, Mr Shorten was stunned by the amount of support the Wynnum community had gathered as part of a fundraiser to aid his recovery.

"I almost doubled over," Mr Shorten said when he saw the number of people who turned out at the event held at the Wynnum Leagues Club.

"I can't say thank you enough, to my friends and my family."

Still unable to remember the accident or his airlift to hospital, the 55-year-old counts himself lucky.

"It's not something I really want to remember. I prefer to think about the tremendous support I got while in hospital," the father-of-four said.

"The doctors and nurses were amazing, but my wife is the rock - without her I wouldn't be here today."

The weekend event and truck show spearheaded by Mr Shorten's good mate Mark Hunter and a core group of about 20 volunteers raised more than $7000 to help the family.

"Everyone around here knows Shane - he is very mischievous," Mr Hunter said.

Mr Hunter said he would do anything to help out his friend, and delivered on that promise when he stripped down to his board shorts in front of the crowd to take on the dunk tank as part of the fundraiser.

"It's thanks to the help of everyone. Shane would do the exact same for us if the glove was on the other hand," Mr Hunter said immediately after his ice cold plunge.

"We met when I was driving a bus to Gympie north for a football trip and he told me if I pulled over at a pub for the team he would get me a carton.

"Well he got me the carton and we have been friends ever since."

Shane's daughter Jolene Shorten said she was overwhelmed by the efforts of the community.

"It's like a family here, we were born in the area, played in the area, went to work with dad in the area - they are a great bunch of people".

The funds raised on the day will help make the Shorten family home wheelchair accessible and adjust the bathrooms to his needs.

Despite a full day of mateship the cherry on top was still to come for Mr Shorten who was able to head home for the first time since the accident.

"The best part will be waking up with my beautiful wife beside me," he said.

If you can help with the renovations call Mark on 0411 813 722.

Big Rigs

REPORT: Quiet week at Grafton saleyards

Premium Content REPORT: Quiet week at Grafton saleyards

With one processor sitting out, it was a cheaper day at the weekly sales

Former Yamba Waratah’s mum says club “shafted” her son

Premium Content Former Yamba Waratah’s mum says club “shafted” her son

Debbie Holloway has lashed the club on their Facebook page following his departure...

ARTEFACTS: Exciting summer sensations

Premium Content ARTEFACTS: Exciting summer sensations

Summer Sensations celebrates artists and their wonderful creative contribution to...