Town’s heartwarming response to tragedy
YANDINA is a small town with Queensland's biggest heart.
In the six days since a carpark tragedy took six-year-old Indie Armstrong from them and put sister Lily, 8, and grandmother Sandy, 57, in hospital, the Sunshine Coast community has cooked and delivered dozens of meals to the family, raised tens of thousands of dollars and even graded and improved the driveway to their rural home.
Yesterday the focus was a cricket day and fundraiser at Yandina Cricket Club.
Organiser Scott Cushan said the Nambour Mill shopping centre tragedy, where an out-of-control car driven by an elderly driver on Sunday fatally hit Indie and seriously hurt Lily and their grandmother, had put her parents in "the worst situation any parent can be in".
"Today's about the local community, about the Armstrong family and about coming together," Mr Cushan said.
The cricketers had a minute's silence before play in the fundraising matches.
It echoes the silence that gripped North Arm State School earlier this week at a special assembly where a memorial was started for the "cherished" friend and student.
P&C president Aveen Kerr said the school parents had rallied, with a roster past the end of next month already filled to provide meals for the family.
An earthmoving firm, Fraser Earthworks, went to their home and fixed the road in.
"As a community we've all pitched in together," Ms Kerr said.
After so many tears at home, at the school and at the temporary memorial in the shopping centre carpark, smiles had begun to return to the faces of the kids as they had their faces painted or joined the bouncy castle.
"It's beautiful, especially after the week we've had," Ms Kerr said.
"It's been a terribly sad week for everybody, particularly for our school.
"It just shows the kind of community spirit that exists here within Yandina and North Arm."
Friends said the family had passed on their thanks as they grappled with their grief.
A GoFundMe page - Support the Armstrongs - has so far raised more than $70,000.