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Paul Lobb



No the RAAF hasn’t changed its uniform and no it’s not trying to save fuel on the tarmac. Instead this is fundraising Air Force style. Personnel at RAAF base Williamtown spent the day muscling an FA-18 hornet over a 100 metre course. “C’mon in out in out C’mon” 14 teams took part in the tug of war.The hardest part was to get the 17 tonne fighter jet moving. But with a little momentum and the military’s can do attitude, most teams were able to pull the aircraft over the line in around a minute. Not everyone could go the distance, but when its a good cause, stopping is not an option. “yeah they just went straight over me.” The day raised $6,500 for the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic at Newcastle’s John Hunter Children’s Hospital. “One of the guys at our work …

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A Hunter Valley grandmother has beaten the odds to survive a major heart attack. She was kept alive by her husband and grandson until help arrived, and today had the chance to thank the paramedics who shocked her back to life. 17,500 people die from cardio vascular disease each year in New South Wales alone. And only four percent of all cardiac arrest victims or people who’s hearts stop beating will survive. Today’s visit to the Lewis household was just a friendly follow up. But recently, these officers responded to the same Cessnock address, where 62 year old Lorraine suffered a cardiac arrest. “just before it happened I was talking to Nan, and she was in mid sentence. It happened very quickly.” “I’ll tell you what, four minutes is a long time, that’s when the ambulance arrived and took over …

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School holiday crowds have been wowed by a playful seal which has been taking some R & R on a sunny rock shelf in Newcastle. He was first spotted by delighted locals on Thursday morning, after wondering up Nobbys beach between the flags. The seal has been drawing a crowd not far from where the Pasha Bulker ran aground in June last year. The semi aquatic marine mammals spend much of their lives in the water, but are also quite adept moving around on land due to their flat flippers which also work quite well as feet. The nearest seal colony to Newcastle is on Montague Island near Narooma on the New South Wales south coast. National Parks and Wlidlife officers who were on crowd control duty next to Sammy this week, say while he is a New Zealand Fur …

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Doctors in the Hunter are trying to reduce the number of diabetics who suffer debilitating complications. They’ve launched a strategy designed to ensure that people living with the disease get the best possible care. Naomi Malcolm is one of 25,000 people in the Hunter living with diabetes, and managing the disease is a large part of her life. “It’s a matter of getting up early enough to make sure I can test my glucose, have breakfast, have my insulin. Then when it comes around to lunch time and dinner time, it’s the same routine.” General practitioners have launched a new plan, calling on people with the disease to have a check up with their doctor at least once a year, to ensure they’re getting the right care, and to avoid any side effects. GP Dr Mark Foster said “Increased rates …

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The many shades of Nelson Mandela’s life have been captured on canvas by a Hunter Valley artist. The works will not only raise money to support Mandela’s humanitarian work in Africa, but one will be presented to the man himself on his 90th birthday. Pokolbin painter Greg Wilson’s walls are filled with art that exudes colour, life and energy. He has many famous portraits to his credit, but possibly the most recognisable is Nelson Mandela. Greg was asked to paint a portrait of the ageing freedom fighter by an African charity of which Mandela is patron. So with Cockatiel Jesse on his shoulder, he painted three, two to be auctioned for charity and one for Mandela as a birthday gift. “It’s really a powerful image of happiness and freedom and there’s another one where he was just released from jail …

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