Peter Notely and partner's rental property after the Valentine's Day storm.
Peter Notely and partner's rental property after the Valentine's Day storm.

Family's luck turns around after losing everything

A SOUTH Burnett couple are getting back on their feet after losing everything in last week's storms.

Peter Notely and his partner Kelly Wirth's Valentine's evening took a devastating turn when storms hit their rental property near Nanango.

The couple were inside their house on Grindstone Rd when the front section of their roof was torn off by powerful winds.

Shocked by the turn of events, Mr Notely said he didn't really take action until the hail started.

"If the wind was able to blow off our house's roof it sure was going to be the shed next,” Mr Notely said.

"I needed to move the ute. It was parked in the shed. You wouldn't believe it...just as I was reversing my ute out, the shed roof blew off and landed right behind the ute...that got me.

"The hail was hitting my ute but it wasn't too big...maybe the size of your middle finger's nail...I'd rather have the hail hit my ute than the roof fall on it, that's for sure.”

The hail proved to be an issue though and caused the ceiling to collapse.

"Asbestos was in the ceiling....then it was everywhere. We lost most of our furniture because of that,” Mr Notely said.

"No one knew about this beforehand.”

Mr Notely and his partner were left with very little.

They had no home, hardly any furniture or homewares, and five pets to look after.

Just as the couple were giving up hope, their luck turned around.

Sandy Towell, chief executive officer of Boots and Bulldust, heard about the couple's plight and decided to do what she could to help out.

"They had nothing. It was devastating...I did all I could to help them,” Ms Towell said.

"The charity shops (Seeds of Hope and Seasons of Change) have some money put aside for crisis work...we used some to get them everything they need, from saucepans to couches.”

Mr Notely said Ms Towell and her team had helped them get their life back together.

"We're so lucky that Sandy was able to help us out. We've found a new place and her charity is helping us put stuff into our new place, to turn it into a real home,” Mr Notely said.

Ms Towell even located a donated bed through Facebook for the couple.

Mr Notely and his partner are moving into a place on the outskirts of Kingaroy.

The place is big enough for their three dogs and two cats.

"We were able to get our rent money back and we've got some stuff ready to move. It's sitting in rain though. Lucky I still had my tarps,” Mr Notely said.

"I'm a regular at Cooks Bakery and they're also helping us out. They've given us some linen, curtains, duvets, and necessary stuff like that.

"We're working on the move and should be settled soon. It's not all that bad any more thanks to those who have helped us find a place and get new stuff for the house.”

South Burnett

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