Generous gift stuns couple
EVERY moment Colleen and Greg Balderston spend together is precious, and a break from reality is just what they need.
Now that wish has been granted, thanks to The Hope Chest and the selflessness of cancer survivor Diane Sexton.
Earlier this year, Mrs Sexton won a competition run by the Grafton lingerie store, for a get-away at the Coachman's Motor Inn in Coffs Harbour.
The Hope Chest owner Carmell Sanne also told her the original prize of two days accommodation had been doubled after the motel owner heard about her cancer battle.
While it could be easily argued that she was as worthy as any competition winner, the Grafton grandmother decided to pass on her holiday to someone who was doing it tougher.
The Balderstons fit the bill perfectly.
The Grafton couple's lives have been spent battling illness after Colleen, 63, was diagnosed with bone cancer in 2010.
Then in February Greg was diagnosed with oesophageal and stomach cancer.
Mr Balderston's chemotherapy and radiation treatments are ongoing and he has to be fed through a tube. So when they found out they had won a trip away, Ms Balderstone was amazed.
"When I saw (Carmell) I just couldn't help but give her a big hug," she said.
"We've never won anything in our lives so it's quite good."
They left yesterday for Coffs Harbour, after three weeks of radiation therapy in Lismore. "We're looking forward to it after Lismore," Ms Balderston said.
"This time it will just be relaxation, no hassles. Just reading and doing puzzles."
The couple also plan to go down to the jetty and just sit in the park. Mrs Sexton said she was thrilled to be able to give the holiday away to such deserving people.
"I think they deserve it, everybody suffers in different ways and cancer's such a terrible thing," she said.
"It's lucky if you can have one you can cure."