Emotional family reunion after COVID-19 lockdown to end in tears of joy for Geraldton truck driver

Phoebe PinGeraldton Guardian
Geraldton truck driver Ian Rixon can't wait to see his children in the Easter States for the first time in two years.
Camera IconGeraldton truck driver Ian Rixon can't wait to see his children in the Easter States for the first time in two years. Credit: Phoebe Pin/Geraldton Guardian

A Geraldton truck driver who has not been able to hug his kids for more than two years is one of the many West Australians celebrating the imminent lifting of the State’s hard border in February.

The last time Ian Rixon saw two of his daughters, who live on the Sunshine Coast, was at the youngest girl’s high school graduation ceremony in November 2019. He then visited his other daughter in Victoria in February 2020, just before WA plunged was into COVID-19 lockdown.

Since then, Mr Rixon has relied on social media to keep in touch with his children, brother and parents, who also live in the Eastern States.

Mr Rixon said it was sure to be an emotional reunion when he was finally able to visit his kids after WA reopened its border on February 5.

Geraldton truck driver Ian Rixon with his daughters Brooke and Sandii.
Camera IconGeraldton truck driver Ian Rixon with his daughters Brooke and Sandii. Credit: Supplied/Ian Rixon/Ian Rixon

“It always ends in tears with us — there were even tears at my little one’s graduation because she just looked so grown up,” he said.

While many booked their flights as soon as the border announcement was made, Mr Rixon said he planned to wait until the travel rush subsides to see his family.

“I am still not sure when to go over,” he said.

“The flights are going to be so expensive, so I might just leave it for a couple of months and then go as soon as I can.”

Mr Rixon said his youngest daughter was eager to explore Geraldton and the Mid West.

“I sent her a pile of information about Geraldton and the surrounding areas. She is really into history, and Geraldton is full of history,” he said.

A motorbike ride through Cambodia and Vietnam is also on the bucket list for Mr Rixon, who said the freedom to travel was one of the biggest motivators for him to get vaccinated.

“I have had both my jabs,” he said. “I got it because I want to travel and see my family.”

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