Communities dig deep for Keast family

THE Malmsbury and Kyneton communities came together at the weekend to show their support for the Keast family.

The Malmsbury and Kyneton cricket clubs, and Kyneton Football and Netball Club got together to organise a celebrity verses locals Twenty20 cricket benefit match at the Kyneton Showgrounds. 

The event honoured Courtney Keast, 12, who lost her life in a boating accident this year.

Co-organiser Steven Tatterson said the event had raised more than $12,500, with donations still being counted.

He said he was overwhelmed by support from the community, who had backed the event 100 per cent.

"We didn't do it for gratitude or pats on the back," he said.

"It was to remember Courtney, to celebrate her life as well as getting the family there to, not so much forget, but put it to the back of their minds for a few hours and have a good time.

"We wanted them to remember her and all the good things, and get the community to rally around the cause."

The clubs gathered 10 celebrities to take part in the match, including Olympic cycling gold medalist Scott McGrory, former Australian test cricketer Bryce McGain and former Australian women's test captain Karen Rolton.

Other guests included former Australian women's test cricketer Melanie Jones, current Victorian women's cricketer Emily McIntyre, Before The Game and SEN presenter Andy Mahar, Channel 10's Rob Waters, comedian Simon Rogers, ABCGrandstand presenter Dan Lonergan and former AFL footballer Rene Kink.

Mr Tatterson said he wanted to thank everyone who supported the event, including a number of local businesses.

"We had about 400 to 500 people there," he said.

"Every local business who put in something we want to thank.

"It was a real big community effort."

All money raised from the event will be given to the Keast family.

Courtney's mum Jodie Keast said her family was humbled by the support.

Donations can be deposited into ANZ account 013706 389110813.

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