Coen Ashton is ready to head off on his adventure of a lifetime. Optus manager Helen Blackburn arrived to see the Ashton family – Coen, Dawn and Mark – on their way and present them with mobile broadband and a satellite phone. The donated phone service will keep Coen in contact with his medical team.
Coen Ashton is ready to head off on his adventure of a lifetime. Optus manager Helen Blackburn arrived to see the Ashton family – Coen, Dawn and Mark – on their way and present them with mobile broadband and a satellite phone. The donated phone service will keep Coen in contact with his medical team. Valerie Horton

Inspirational journey begins

COEN Ashton set off on the trip of a lifetime on Saturday – a journey that will challenge him and inspire others to sign up as organ donors.

The 13-year-old Maryborough boy battles cystic fibrosis and has diabetes, but is determined to help save other people’s lives.

As he awaits a double lung transplant, Coen has set off on a jet-ski trip down the length of the Murray River in NSW.

His goal is to inspire others to sign on to the Organ Donor Register.

He had 1000 registration forms but 220 of those have already been signed.

Coen’s mum Dawn said her son was “really excited” about setting off on his adventure.

“He’s really motivated and is already off to a great start with 220 forms signed,” she said.

“The businesses in Maryborough have been awesome and really gotten behind him, and the community has been wonderful too.

“One lady donated $500 after seeing his story in the newspaper.”

On Friday the family was visited by an Optus Country representative who provided them with communications equipment.

“They have given us a satellite phone and internet connection so we can have contact with Coen’s doctors while he is doing the trip,” Dawn said.

“It’s a huge journey. First we have to drive 2000km to get to the river, then there’s the 2000km river and then the trip home.”

Between stints on the water Coen will have to continue his daily treatment of physiotherapy and nebulisers.

Anyone who wants to support Coen can pick up an Organ Donor Register form from Medicare offices and drop the signed form into Maryborough Fitness Health and Bodyworks, or P for Pets.



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