Epic walker a local hero

A 2000km walk and $40,000 in the bank for charity

JANINE RANKIN
Last updated 12:00 20/11/2012
Ken Lusby
WARWICK SMITH/Fairfax NZ
LONG WALK: Warming up with 60 laps around Palmerston North’s Square in April, Ken Lusby has since walked the length of New Zealand for Cure Kids, and is now a local hero.

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Palmerston North Inner City Post Shop operator Ken Lusby has returned from walking the length of New Zealand for Cure Kids a local hero.

He ended the 2000km walk at Cape Reinga ahead of schedule on November 7, with more than $40,000 in the bank, to find he was to be honoured with a Kiwibank Local Hero award.

Palmerston North MP Iain Lees-Galloway made the presentation at Caccia Birch House last night, congratulating the region's group of heroes for their voluntary efforts that made the community stronger.

Mr Lusby, who celebrated his 60th birthday during the walk, said his trip had been made easier by Lions clubs that provided accommodation, help and warm baths along the way.

"Without them, my walk would not have been the success it was."

Mr Lusby was joined by two other people from Palmerston North, one from Feilding and one from Marton, at the presentation.

Just Zilch co-ordinator Rebecca Culver was honoured for her efforts in developing a network of suppliers who contribute free food for those in need. After two years, the organisation is feeding 60 to 100 people a day, and has also established a community garden to provide fresh produce.

Board treasurer and cooking co-ordinator for the Plant to Plate scheme Gaewyn Grant received her award for her work with volunteers, teachers and children teaching the art of planting, growing, harvesting and cooking fresh vegetables.

Colin McAsey, from Feilding's Schuster's Boxing Academy, was applauded for 10 years as a volunteer, running the club and coaching adults and young people, spending about 10 hours a week training students, and helping them get to weekend events.

Long-serving Rural Women NZ committee member Joan Gower, from Marton, has enjoyed a lifetime of community involvement as a volunteer and fundraiser for causes including baby monitors, Women's Refuge, flood relief, the Cancer Society and St Andrew's church.

"You get involved in all sorts of things, and because of that, one thing leads to another," she said.

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- Manawatu Standard

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