MAKING PROGRESS: (From left) Daughter Clover and Richard and Kylie Allen.
MAKING PROGRESS: (From left) Daughter Clover and Richard and Kylie Allen.

Richard?s longing for a sip

By ADRIAN MILLER sport@northernstar.com.au ALL Richard Allen wants to do is take a sip of an icy-cold apple and mango 'Fresh Up' fruit juice.

For 12 days the Bangalow resident, who was paralysed from the neck down playing rugby for Bangalow against Byron Bay nearly two weeks ago, has been dreaming of a refreshing glass of his favourite fruit drink.

The only problem is you can't buy it in Australia and because of his injuries he's unable to swallow.

But Richard's wife Kylie said he was looking forward to the day when he could take that first, delicious sip.

"Richard really loves his drinks and ice-cold water, so not being allowed one sip is terrible," she said.

"You can't buy it in Australia so we'll have people from New Zealand bringing it when they come to visit."

But even though a throat infection has been causing breathing and swallowing problems, Kylie said Richard was making progress ? including some movement in his arm.

"It seems to be we take a couple of steps forward and a little step back, but he's had his oxygen removed so he's now able to breathe on his own, albeit with difficultly, but we're happy about that," she said.

"We also found some small movement in his arms, which is pretty massive.

"It's only small, but it's the beginning of what we hope will be a huge recovery."

And even though there are good and bad days, Kylie said she was amazed at her husband's overall attitude.

"He's cracking jokes and he's smiling," she said.

"I'm absolutely amazed at how well he's doing. He's so focused and motivated on his recovery."



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