Graham Buchner OAM is recovering well from his major operation two months ago and is itching to get back into community work.
Graham Buchner OAM is recovering well from his major operation two months ago and is itching to get back into community work. Emma Channon

Stalwart makes a steady return

GRAHAM Buchner has been eagerly anticipating getting back to his community duties once again – a sure sign he is recovering from major surgery.

The community stalwart had a major heart operation in early June, which included four heart bypasses and the insertion of a pacemaker.

Now, ten weeks on, Mr Buchner has begun to pick up many of his community roles again and said he is feeling much stronger.

“I’ve been good ever since the operations,” he said.

“I’m doing everything I should be doing and recovering well.

“Probably one of the upsides of this has been losing 21kg.”

When he was recovering in hospital, Mr Buchner joked he was getting updates about his own health from coverage in the Daily News.

“I was reading the paper to see how I was,” he said.

“It was more detailed than the doctor. It just proves that modern technology is a wonderful thing.”

Mr Buchner is still a little tender and has been instructed not to drive or lift anything heavier than 2kg, but he said he was determined to see his recovery through properly.

“For the first 12 weeks you’re not supposed to do any heavy lifting,” he said.

“I did lift some chairs at (a meeting Monday night) and noticed a few little twitches, which proves that’s probably too heavy. Just things like that you have to watch.

“I probably won’t be driving for at least another month.”

When he can get behind the wheel, one of the things Mr Buchner said he was most looking forward to was resuming his roadside clean-ups.

“I’m looking forward to be able to get on the tractor and getting out again,” he said.

This month, his roadside clean-up group marked its 20th year of operation.

Mr Buchner said he greatly appreciated the support and well-wishes of the Warwick community.

“I want to thank everyone for their cards, thoughts and phone calls,” he said.

“I’m surprised how many were interested to know how I was going and what I was doing.”

One of the local issues that had developed during Mr Buchner’s recovery was the future of Slade Campus.

He said it was his wish that the former school and oval “remained in the hands of the community”.

Mr Buchner has resumed his work with the 14 community groups he is involved in and said he would be as good as new in no time.



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