Her life since the death of her son Blaine Rosz last year has been an emotional rollercoaster, but Michele Richardson has been overwhelmed by support and well wishes.
Last week that support skyrocketed after a commercial radio giveaway video went viral putting the Shoalhaven Heads family in the international spotlight.
The emotional YouTube video of radio presenters Kyle and Jacki O offering to pay six months of Ms Richardson’s mortgage and $5000 to finish off home renovations has been viewed by more than 21 million people.
A fundraising appeal to help the family has raised more than $2000, money Mrs Richardson said would go toward a headstone for her son’s grave.
“I’ve had messages of support from around the world, and donations from Texas, New York, England and Ireland,” Ms Richardson said.
Ms Richardson’s eldest daughter Crystal Rozs applied for one of the radio program’s surprise givebacks.
“Mum’s not ready to go back to work yet but the bills are piling up. All I want is for her to have some time to get through the pain.
“After applying I got a call from the radio station that our family’s situation had been chosen for a giveback,” Ms Rozs said.
“They installed cameras in my car and I had to get Mum to Sydney so Kyle could phone her and tell her about the money while we were in the car.”
Ms Rozs came up with a reason for the family to be in her car in Sydney at the allotted time.
“My sister Jess was in on it too,” she said.
Ms Richardson said she heard Jackie O on the radio saying this giveback was for a person who had lost a special someone.
“I thought that was terrible because now I know what it feels like to lose someone special. But then she said over the radio, ‘I’m talking to you, Michele’.”
“I still didn’t fathom that she was talking to me, I didn’t know the car had cameras in it.
“Then as soon as she said Blaine’s name I clicked and then I just lost it.
“Then my daughter Jess handed me her phone and Kyle was on the line. I didn’t know what to say.
“It was a pretty amazing thing,” she said.
“Now thanks to the generosity and kindness of people in Australia nd overseas I will have the money to buy Blaine’s headstone.
“It means a lot and this is a huge relief to me that Blaine will now have a ‘special’ headstone. Now every time I look at it I will be reminded of all this wonderful support.
“Blaine is an exceptional soul. Loyalty, respect and gratitude were important to him so on behalf of my loving son and my family I express my sincere gratitude to all the people who have helped us with support and kind wishes,” she said.
To see the video, search for surprise giveback for Deserving Mum in YouTube or click here. To help raise money for the family visit http://www.gofundme.com/Blainerozs.