'Overwhelming support': Tyson's family thanks community
AS TYSON Christensen's family and friends gathered to say their goodbyes at his funeral on Monday, the family was still lost for words.
Since the 12-year-old's unexpected death just over three weeks ago, the community has rallied around the tight-knit family to show their support during an extremely difficult time.
Tyson's grandfather Col Christensen said they had been blown away by the kindness they had received from close friends as well as strangers.
"On behalf of the entire Christensen family, we would like to thank everyone who has made donations of food, clothing, money and their time during this sad time," Mr Christensen said.
"The way the community has pulled together to help has been overwhelming.
"We are grateful for everyone's support in this time of need.
"Saying thank you just doesn't seem enough."
Mr Christensen's wife Sharen said the loss of their beloved grandson was devastating.
"He was our first grandchild," Mrs Christensen said.
"You couldn't of asked for a nicer kid, very well mannered, polite but very much loved his jokes.
"I still feel like I have a huge hole in my heart.
"Right now it feels like it will never be complete again."
Mrs Christensen said it was not her place to say how Tyson's parents Robert and Lytece and their five children were coping, but only said they were faring as could be expected under the circumstances.
During this time of hardship, the beloved grandmother said the most important thing they had learned was the power of communication.
"You just need to be there for each other," Mrs Christensen said.
"If children have problems, no matter how small it seems, we have to listen to them.
"It might seem small but to them it could mean the world."
The young boy played for the Wondai Wolves Rugby League Club since he was in the Under 6s.
At his funeral, the local club showed its support by wearing their black and yellow jerseys as well as giving him a guard of honour.
Tyson's father Robert also played in the Wondai men's team against Cherbourg Hornets in the Suicide Awareness Round on Saturday, August 3, which the two clubs are planning to host every year.
If this story has raised any issues for you, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.