IN the last Blowes Clothing Cup derby between Orange City and Emus this year, the two sides did more than play the game.
The day was used as a fundraiser for former Orange identity and Orange City player Chris Kimball, who has been fighting leukaemia.
A raffle raised more than $2000 and the two Orange rugby clubs each donated $500.
This meant over $3000 was shared between Kimball, who is in remission but still on medication, and the Leukaemia Foundation.
Kimball, who now lives in Canberra, sent a letter to last week’s Orange City annual general meeting expressing his thanks to Lions and Emus for their efforts.
He wanted to share it with the Central Western Daily’s readers.
Hello Orange City faithful and friends.
I just wanted to get in contact with the club ahead of your AGM to express my deepest thanks and appreciation for helping the Leukaemia Foundation and my family earlier this year.
As many of you know, we’ve had a pretty rough trot this year as I underwent treatment for lymphoma, including a process called a bone marrow transplant.
It’s hard to describe how awful that process was but to put it in terms City people would understand; it’s nastier than a winning port-fuelled bus trip back from Dubbo and more painful than being trapped at the bottom of a ruck by Anthony Sullivan or worse yet, any one of the Nunn clan.
Orange City, with gracious support from Orange Emus, helped raise some money at the local derby at Chook Park earlier this year.
Seeing City win and experiencing such a great, genuine show of support for my family ranks that freezing awful day well and truly with the best.
The funds have helped my family meet some of our treatment costs which have topped about $30,000 with the meter still running.
The clubs also provided cheques for the Leukaemia Foundation, which is an organisation that was there with enormous help and support for my family this year.
I lived in Orange for five terrific years.
I enjoy looking back on my time with Orange City, they were some of the best memories I’ll ever have.
They may not have been the most successful years on the paddock but they certainly provided me with some great times and even better mates.
I would especially like to thank Jason and Melissa Hamling for everything they did to organise the day for our family.
I’d also like to express my appreciation to Steve Stone and Derek Scott for getting the clubs together and to the generosity of the people of Orange especially the Taragel and McClosky families.
In terms of where I’m at right now, everything is progressing okay on the health front.
I’m on that many pills I rattle like a Tic Tac box but they’re helping keep things under control.
Maybe Orange City should enter a Golden Oldies team down the track ... I plan on living that long and will be there with bells on.
Thanks most sincerely,
Chris Kimball and family
n This letter has been edited to fit