Tom Dunning found the ashes of his late wife Lorraine in the ruins of his Dundas property.
Tom Dunning found the ashes of his late wife Lorraine in the ruins of his Dundas property.

Widower's magical discovery in rubble of burned home

WHEN Tom Dunning's house burnt down just a few weeks after losing his beloved wife, it was hard to find the positives in such a devastating set of circumstances.

But through the rubble, he was relieved to locate the ashes of his late wife Lorraine.

A week after his Dundas home was destroyed by flames, the man affectionately known as Pop has been overwhelmed by a community eager to give back to someone who is always there for others.

Mr Dunning's parents bought the place when he was just 10.

WATCH: Pop's reaction to donations after tragedy

He has spent some of the days since sifting through the ruins in the hopes of finding the things he can never purchase again.

Tom Dunning lost his Dundas home to fire on Tuesday afternoon.
Tom Dunning lost his Dundas home to fire on Tuesday afternoon.

An insurance assessment is still to come and Mr Dunning is trying to get a quote for the clean up.

He is staying with neighbours for the time being.

But finding the little urn meant everything.

"That was the main thing I was searching for," he said.

'We were very, very fortunate to find them. It was a big relief once we came up with it.

"You've felt like you've got something back.

"There's all the memories of all the stuff that's gone. It's a bit hard that way. It's happened and we can't do anything about.

"I'm just looking for other little trinkets.

"Lorraine's wedding rings are still in there somewhere if they haven't melted."

Tom Dunning with his late wife Lorraine.
Tom Dunning with his late wife Lorraine. Contributed

Close to $40,000 has been raised, donated by about 650 people on a Facebook fundraising page to help him in his recovery.

Others have donated bedding, clothes, cards of support and other items.

The support has been overwhelming.

"People have given some wonderful support, they really have," Mr Dunning said.

You can assist by visiting here or emailing his daughter-in-law Sonja at smaria@csu.edu.au for more information on how to donate.

Read more stories from Lachlan McIvor.


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