Amanda Keller got emotional on radio this morning.
Amanda Keller got emotional on radio this morning.

Amanda Keller chokes up live on radio

AMANDA Keller struggled through a radio segment this morning as she became emotional several times.

The Jonesy & Amanda radio host became choked up when discussing the death of Lewis, the koala rescued from a bushfire by heroic grandmother Toni Doherty, who pulled the shirt off her back in an attempt to save him at Port Macquarie.

Yesterday, news broke that Lewis, who made headlines around the world, had succumbed to his injuries.

The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital shared the heartbreaking announcement, saying staff had made the decision to put him to sleep.

"We placed him under general anaesthesia this morning to assess his burns injuries and change the bandages," the hospital said in a post about 2.30pm.

It stated Lewis's burns got worse "and unfortunately would not have gotten better".

Keller said she broke down when she read the news.

"I wept as I read it yesterday and I'm trying to work out why I was so affected by it," she said. "And I think it's because Lewis and how we feel symbolises all the hopelessness that we feel at the moment, the powerlessness that we feel.

"It feels like with our droughts, with our fires, with our smoke haze, with our storms, catastrophic weather, that we're heading towards some kind of apocalypse.

"I think with these crazy (weather) extremes, our country doesn't feel like it used to, it feels scary at the moment."

 

Amanda Keller got emotional on radio this morning.
Amanda Keller got emotional on radio this morning.

 

Toni Doherty rescued Lewis the koala from fires near Port Macquarie. Picture: Channel 9
Toni Doherty rescued Lewis the koala from fires near Port Macquarie. Picture: Channel 9

 

Lewis died on Tuesday after succumbing to his injuries. Picture: Channel 9
Lewis died on Tuesday after succumbing to his injuries. Picture: Channel 9

 

She said people wanted help, guidance and action and they were not getting it.

"People like the woman who saved Lewis, Toni Doherty, I think a lot of us wish we were Toni because she did something, she saw something and she did something," she said.

"And I'm so sorry we couldn't save him. I'm crying now, but I just felt this sense of despair and I'm an optimistic person.

"It just really hit me that we need to make this mean something."

Keller said millions of dollars had been donated to the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital and the area needed to be repopulated.

"That's their breeding ground - we've lost so many," she said.

"But also lets urge our leaders on all sides to do something, a plan, because my fear is that this is the new normal and no one is planning for it.

"No one is planning and if you are, tell us."

Keller said, "Let's make Lewis's death mean something", as she continued to break down at the end of the segment.

"This is the new Australia and it's awful," she finished.

The hospital's GoFundMe page has reached more than $1.7 million in donations.


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