Jenny’s Story

img2_jenny_mckenna_freshtracks


Freshtracks as a registered charity is helping to collect donations specifically for Jenny’s rehabilitation. Donations over $2 are fully tax deductible.

Jenny’s Story

At the age of twelve, while living in Forster, Jenny volunteered at the first Forster Ironman completion in 1985. The infectious atmosphere surrounding the event inspired Jenny to purchase her first road bike and begin cycling the streets of Forster.

Upon returning to Sydney she completed her schooling at Loreto College, Normanhurst before starting a Marketing degree at UWS. Throughout this time Jen continued to be involved in endurance sports, competing in small triathlons, half marathons and surf life saving events. She would also return to Forster each year to either volunteer or avidly watch the Ironman.

In 1998 she achieved her dream by qualifying for the Ironman event in her home town of Forster. She not only completed in the event but successfully qualified for the World Championships in Hawaii later that year.  In the following years Jenny continued to regularly compete in triathlons and running events both in Australia and overseas.

Jenny’s competitive spirit continued into her professional life, where she won several sales awards, including an overseas trip.

On the 29th of April 2007, Jenny’s life was dramatically changed.  Whilst competing in the Canberra Cycling Tour Jen was forced to swerve into oncoming traffic to avoid a collision with cyclists in front of her. As a result she was hit by an on-coming four wheel drive.

Jenny spent the next four weeks in intensive care, at Canberra Hospital, fighting for her life. In the accident she had sustained multiple fractures as well as a significant brain injury. The doctors said that it was unlikely that she would ever be able to walk, talk or even eat independently again.

John, her father, recognised early on that it would be a difficult road when he said, ”from now on it will take hefty resolve from Jenny and many others to gain for her some quality of life. When I look now at her beautiful face, almost unmarked, I find it hard to comprehend that our last born child cannot do one, single thing for herself.”  The last six years however have been even harder than he imagined for both himself and the whole family.

Jen requires constant care and the more she becomes aware of her surroundings the more frustrated she becomes at not being able to achieve things for herself. However with help from many and her own determination she has made huge strides in all areas of rehab and with assistance is finally walking….. certainly not a prediction 5-6 years ago. In spite of this progress she will always need help.”  

In May 2013, nearly six years after the accident, Jen has finally received some financial compensation for the accident.  Even with the reduction in financial stress there remains the daily task of looking after Jen, helping her access rehabilitation services and finding a place where she can live long term.

Lack of awareness of brain injury and minimal government funding means there are currently very limited alternatives to aged-care facilities for young people.

Sign up for eNEWS






Contact us

Email: info@freshtracks.com.au
Address: Suite 1A Level 2, 802 Pacific Hwy Gordon NSW 2072
Post: PO Box 170 St Ives NSW 2075
ABN: 49 197 492 992