TIMOTHY Batinich loved his cherries.
A fourth generation cherry grower, it was his passion to grow the tiny fruit at his family’s 800-hectare property “Cherrymore”, Young, one of the largest cherry producers in the district.
He also had a beautiful wife Natasha and daughters Ariahana and Arabella.
But earlier this year, after nearly seven years with a brain tumour, the 29-year-old father lost his battle.
And his Natasha has made it her mission to keep his memory alive by fundraising for the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.
Tim was working on the family property in 2010 when he was diagnosed with the brain tumour.
“He was quite young, he was just 22,” Natasha said.
He had the tumour removed by renowned neurosurgeon Dr Charlie Teo, as well as two rounds of radiation and three rounds of chemotherapy.
He died in March this year.
Due to Tim’s love of growing cherries, the popular Young Cherry Festival is the perfect opportunity to raise awareness of brain cancer.
The festival, which will run from December 2 to 4 and attracts thousands of people, includes a Cherry King and Queen competition, where locals raise funds for charities in their bid to be crowned the winner.
And Natasha’s friend Jacqui Everdell is using her bid for the crown to raise funds for the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.
Natasha met Jacqui, a child care worker, when she put her daughters in care while Tim was ill.
“Usually the charities people raise for are local charities, but this is a problem which is not just affecting people from Young. It is affecting people across Australia,” Natasha said.
“And Jacqui is running in honour of Tim.”
Natasha said they had approached local businesses, who have donated items which will be placed in a box trailer, also donated by Young Tyrepower.
This prize, worth $6500, will be raffled to raise funds.
The girls are also hosting a Walk for Tim on October 22, just after Tim’s birthday, at Wombat Oval.
Entrants buy a t-shirt to enter, and then can walk as much or as little of the 29 kilometres to help raise funds.
Natasha said there would be stalls, a jumping castle, bungee and races for children, as well as antique tractors and steam engines.
Natasha is also hosting a black tie gala ball on November 19.
The gala ball will be held at the Young Empire Hotel.
The elegant event, which will include a three-course meal and a charity auction, will donate all profits to the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.
To purchase tickets, call Natasha on 0400 575 783.
Natasha said people can donate directly to the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation at www.curebraincancer.org.au.