A long-lost teddy has finally been reunited with his family months after being left behind in outback NSW.
Gordon Wilson left his son’s treasured bear ‘Pooh’ on a fence post along the Barrier Highway near Broken Hill in March while part way through a 5000km journey from Bowen in north Queensland to Perth in WA.
- ‘Pooh’ was travelling cross country from Queensland to Western Australia
- The bear was left near Broken Hill in outback NSW
- The teddy has now been reunited with family in Perth
Mr Wilson had been taking photos with the bear as a way of keeping himself and the family entertained.
After being “distracted by flies” and driving off – it took hours for Mr Wilson to realise he’d left his son’s prized possession more than 150km away.
He decided against going back, and that’s where the real adventure began.
‘Amazed’ by support
He and his wife Lois Wilson logged onto to social media and began posting on Broken Hill Facebook groups, asking if someone had seen or picked up the bear.
What happened next came as a shock to the Wilsons.
Their appeals for help were shared all over the internet.
Grazier Mitch Rodgers was one of those interested onlookers.
Determined to reunite the family with their beloved bear, he drove out from Comarto Station near Wilcannia to find Pooh where he had been left.
While the plan had initially been to post him back in the mail, Mr Rodgers and Mr Wilson thought the adventure should continue.
So they decided to harness the power of social media to find more people willing to travel with the bear across to the west coast.
“Mitch went to great trouble and started to share the story on social media with some great photos,” Mr Wilson said.
He said Pooh’s journey garnered interested from as far afield as Scotland, where he had relatives.
He said Pooh travelled 150km to Broken Hill and visited Silverton before heading south to Mildura in Victoria.
“He then received a lift from a couple to Adelaide and from there flew to Perth,” he said.
“I’ll tell you what it took off pretty quick,” Mr Rodgers said.
A story for the kids
24-year-old Ben Wilson, who’s had the bear since he was a baby, is still stunned that so many people dedicated their time and effort to make sure the teddy was returned.
“I’m grateful for Mitch, the Broken Hill community along with anyone and everyone who was involved,” Ben said.
Asked if Pooh would be having any more adventures anytime soon….the answer was “unlikely”.
“He’ll be staying with me until I have my first child and then when he or she gets old enough, I’ll tell them the story of what happened here,” Ben said.
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