The grieving mother of a promising young rugby union player, who took his own life, says the family struggled to bring his body home due to Western Australia’s hard border.
Jordan Grace moved to WA from Victoria in February on a semi-professional contract and had been playing with the Curtin University Rugby Union Football Club when he died last month.
It was just three days short of his 21st birthday.
His mother Katie Grace and her husband were granted G2G passes to enter WA, but were told they must complete 14 days in hotel quarantine.
“Even though I said quite clearly what we were going over there for,” she told 6PR radio on Wednesday.
“We only want to go to two places — to the morgue to identify our boy and then to his home to pack up his things, and that’s it — and we would leave straight away.
“But they said ‘no, you have to hotel quarantine’ and obviously that was unrealistic.”
The heartbroken mother said it took about two weeks until her son’s body was released and they could get him home.
“We were devastated but so angry — angrier and angrier as they days went on,” she said.
“We just felt like we couldn’t mourn him properly because we were so angry.”
Premier Mark McGowan said it was “obviously a very, very sad situation” for the family.
“Anyone who hears the circumstances would feel deeply for them,” he told reporters on Wednesday.
“The police did contact the family and try to work through the issues with them but obviously it was not possible to do that.
“Obviously everyone is sympathetic to them.”
In their tribute, Curtin University Rugby wrote at the time that it was “deeply saddening” to share the news of his death.
“Tackle-breaking, agile, blessed with natural ability and a strong work ethic, Jordan was known at Curtin Rugby, and in the wider Perth Rugby Community, for his fearless, uncompromising and energetic approach to the game,” they wrote.
A GoFundMe page has been set up, raising more than $8000 for the family.
Richard Patterson-Hyde wrote: “We’ll all miss you and your love and passion for the game that brings us all together. May God brings us all together one day again. Big love.”
Matt Stevens posted: “RIP mate, it was a pleasure running out on the field with you.”
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