Chanelle Rae: Mum recalls bubbly daughter


By Danny Lannen
Geelong Advertiser
CHANELLE Rae was five or so sparkly years old when she came running out of a Geelong Football Club clinic to her mum Karen. She gleefully announced as she jumped into the car that she had met this new footballer and he had the most beautiful hair. Then as they drove out of Kardinia Park and waited at the traffic lights on La Trobe Tce there he was, by dint of fate, in the car beside them.

She squealed. They wound down their windows and Karen told Corey Enright he’d won a heart. The boy from Kimba smiled and laughed. It was his first season in the hoops.

Karen Rae recalled the story with a special light in her eyes yesterday. It was a light bestowed by 14 privileged years with the jewel everyone knew and loved as Chanelle. A copy of a newspaper lay open on the couch beside her. She reached out and so lightly touched a photograph of her daughter on a page.

Chanelle shouldn’t have been there beside so much bad news. She should have been there in the lounge giving her dad Ian a bit of hurry-up, or wrestling her brothers Logan and Blain, or in her bedroom lost in the world of her drawings, or glowing with her talk about the next family camping trip at Peterborough.

Mrs Rae reckons one hour of darkness allowed suicide to steal into Chanelle’s otherwise vivid life.

“There was no down side to her,” Mrs Rae said. “And we’re not just saying that because we’re her parents. She was bright and bubbly, what else can you say? She loved everybody.”

Circumstances surrounding Chanelle’s death — perhaps a result of cyber bullying and the fourth teen suicide to touch Western Heights College in six months — sent shockwaves across the nation. Full story.

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