Love stands tall in Leadville

LOVE: These letters are all that remain in Knyvett family's front paddock at “Broombee”. Their house, pictured far right, was saved.

LOVE: These letters are all that remain in Knyvett family's front paddock at “Broombee”. Their house, pictured far right, was saved.

DRIVE slowly down Black Stump Way and you’ll see the four letter word warming the hearts of the Central West: love. 

Four, tall steel letters spelling ‘love’ are all you can see in the bushfire ravaged paddock belonging to the Knyvett family.

The Knyvetts were among dozens of property owners struck by the Sir Ivan bushfire which burnt more than 50,000 hectares at the weekend. The fire wiped out the village of Uarbry near Leadville, claiming 23 homes and killing an extensive number of livestock from Dunedoo to Cassilis.

Last September David and Ginny Knyvett opened their home and garden to the Leadville community to celebrate the wedding of their daughter Louise to Paul Jewiss. The letters decorated their garden reception and were later moved to their front paddock so passers-by could enjoy them. 

“What else could be so resilient it’s the only thing left standing? It has to be love,” Louise said.

“It’s a sign of what’s important.” 

Guests at Louise and Paul Jewiss' wedding standing in the Knyvett family's front yard. Photo: Feather & Birch.

Guests at Louise and Paul Jewiss' wedding standing in the Knyvett family's front yard. Photo: Feather & Birch.

Louise, who will return from Sydney to be with her family this week, said it was unbelievable how things had changed. 

“We we’re actually lucky to get a dry day for the wedding,” she said.

“Back in September everything was so green and lush. 

“We were married up on a hill with a view down across the valley. That’s actually the cliff which the fire came down on the weekend. The letters are the one unchanged thing in the entire scene.”

With telecommunication towers down and widespread power outages, communication in the wake of the fire has been difficult.

“I haven’t been able to speak to Dad on the phone this week but I think the photo of the letters was a bit of a sign from him.”

Louise’s brothers Charlie and George are helping with the clean up. 

The Sir Ivan fire is now under control.

The story Love stands tall in Leadville first appeared on The Land.

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