The recent passing of popular Coonabarabran identity, Leesa Kelly, led to an outpouring of grief across the community, however, this grief is now being channelled into a special project to celebrate the memory of Leesa and her kind and giving nature.
A joint initiative of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service Coonabarabran Support Group and Palliative 4 People, the local charities are hoping to raise $1000 through an online auction to fund a memorial chair.
The seat will be created by the Coonabarabran Men’s Shed and has been designed in consultation with the Kelly family.
It will be installed on the 9th hole at the Coonabarabran Golf Club - a spot where Leesa liked to watch her son, Zak, practice his golf.
To give the golfers a new challenge, the seat will be a non-moveable hazard.
Coonabarabran Support Group publicity officer, Ellen Mahne, said Leesa would be smiling to know she was “challenging” the golfers in this way.
“When Leesa passed away, I think, like everyone, we were so saddened that we wanted to do something meaningful that was befitting of her memory,” Mrs Mahne said.
“Leesa did so much for others in their time of need, especially in her role at the pharmacy, and now it is our turn to give back to her.
“I think she would be saying, “why are you all fussing over me?”, but I think she would be so proud that we have all pulled together in this difficult time.”
All auction items will be uploaded to the “Lipstick for Leesa” Facebook page, which kicks off on Friday, 29 September.
Mrs Mahne said there were a range of donations up for auction, including wine, and a number of lipsticks that had been donated anonymously.
“Leesa loved bright lipstick and she was always seen with it on and loved vibrant colours - it really has become her legacy,” she said.
“Each item will have a reserve and once that reserve is met the highest bidder will claim that item.
“For those who don’t have Facebook, we are happy for you to view the auction items with us and place an auction bid for them.”
The auction will conclude on Friday, 6 October.
It is hoped Leesa’s memorial seat will be ready in time for unveiling at the annual Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service Golf Day on Saturday, 28 October.
Wendy Kelly, Jane McWhirter, Ellen Mahne, Maria Slade and Brittany Kelly are working on a special project to celebrate the life of the late Leesa Kelly.