It’s the moments of mateship that help people rebuild their lives after a tragedy.
A GoFundMe has raised more than $10,000 dollars to help local record shop owner Chris Dunn recover from two devastating fires.
In 2018, Mr Dunn’s beloved store at The Edwards on Parry Street was lost in a blaze that also destroyed many of his prize records.
The only saving grace amongst this tragedy was that his most beloved collection was safe at his home in Newcastle West.
However, two years later, Mr Dunn’s home and lifelong record collection was lost in a house fire.
After losing his record shop and then his home, he said he was suffering from anxiety and was addressing the struggles with his mental health.
“On that night [of the house fire], I felt what anxiety was in my body,” he said.
“I get flashes when hearing or thinking of a song and then can’t play it. I’ve been struggling with my mental health and this makes me address it.”
Mr Dunn has a long-standing relationship with the music industry in Australia.
He is credited with helping to bring Nirvana to Australia in the summer of 1992 and managed Australian alternative rock band Something for Kate.
In a bid to help Mr Dunn get his life back on track, former Silverchair bassist and owner of The Edwards, Chris Joannou, and his wife Karissa have set up the fundraising page ‘Do it for Dunny’.
“We first crossed paths in 1996, so we’re obviously very close,” Mr Joannou said.
“That horrible fire [at The Edwards] cost him his shop, he experienced a total loss in his house, and then the record collection he’s been working on for 40 years.
“The poor bugger was left with the clothes on his back and his phone.”
For Mr Dunn, the fundraiser is “quite overwhelming”.
He added it was “really hard to see what I was banking on as my super go up in flames”, but said the money would help him set up again.
“Mum’s 92 now and I’m her carer [so] my own problems get pushed back as I work with her,” he said.
“The money will help me get everyday things, clothes, and have money in the bank.
“I’m 60 now so the record collection was my super. When I need $20, I’ll have $20 and won’t be relying on the dole.”
When asked what record he was most eager to get his hands on again, Mr Dunn picked out a copy of Loveless by My Bloody Valentine.
Mr Joannou said that any donation great or small would be appreciated.
To donate to the GoFundMe, click here.
— Calum Thomson