A SCARE with a brain aneurysm has helped spark a trek on the Kokoda Track which has the aim of raising $250,000 for battling veterans and farmers.
Alex Wolf, a welfare advocate at Wodonga's Hume Veterans' Information Centre, was at work earlier this year when the drama unfolded.
"I went into the veterans' centre one morning and I had a dizzy spell and fell over," Mr Wolf, 66, said.
"I spent eight days in hospital and they said it was probably an inner ear imbalance but when they did a scan they found a brain aneurysm and I was very lucky.
"The chances were I would have had a stroke, they can't confirm how or when, it's a bit like walking around with a bomb in your head."
Fresh from having the aneurysm clipped from his blood system, Mr Wolf decided it was time to act on an idea proposed by son Jamie.
Jamie Wolf, like his father a past soldier, had flagged walking Kokoda for charity and now they're doing so with stepbrother Tony Graham and Coo-Wee Ride charity founder Matt Aldridge.
"It was two days post surgery with his head stapled that he said 'we should do your idea of Kokoda'," Jamie Wolf said.
"So here we are, dad, Tony, Matt and myself launching Kokoda 2020 in the hope of supporting veterans and farmers by putting ourselves out there and raising awareness and funds."
The quartet will pay their own way and are fundraising to bankroll eight farmers and veterans with mental health struggles who will join them on the 10-day walk next April.
Overall they hope to generate $250,000 which will be split between farmers and the information centre.
Mr Aldridge has helped identify participants and said there had already been a positive impact.
"A couple have said if it wasn't for Kokoda coming up they might not be around any more, so that's good that it's given them a goal," he said.
The Wolfs both have post traumatic stress disorder believe having such a major undertaking has given them a beneficial focus.
Various fundraisers are planned with the first a sportsmen's night at Albury's SS&A Club late next month.
Jamie Wolf, a Bunnings manager, has barbecue days at the hardware chain set for December 20-21.
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