Hedland local legend Rowan Dann nominated for community service award for raising mental health awareness

Alexander ScottNorth West Telegraph
Rowan Dann, pictured on Port Hedland's Redbank Bridge, started Rowan's Walk in the Pilbara town to honour members of his family who had taken their own life and to raise awareness and understanding about suicide prevention. Redbank Bridge makes up a section of the Rowan's Walk route.
Camera IconRowan Dann, pictured on Port Hedland's Redbank Bridge, started Rowan's Walk in the Pilbara town to honour members of his family who had taken their own life and to raise awareness and understanding about suicide prevention. Redbank Bridge makes up a section of the Rowan's Walk route. Credit: Danella Bevis/The West Australian

A Hedland local who has battled tirelessly to raise mental health awareness in the Pilbara community has has been nominated for a community service award.

Rowan Dann, 21, has been nominated for the Stumpys Roadhouse Local Legend Award as part of the Western Australian Community Achievement Awards.

Mr Dann is well known to the Port Hedland community for starting Rowan’s walk to raise awareness of mental health and suicide prevention, and last year saw 300 people joined Mr Dann on his 15km walk from Port Hedland to South Hedland.

The walk was first held by Mr Dann to remember his 34-year-old aunty, Geraldine Petula Maher, who took her life on October 10, 2016.

The event, which was first held in 2018 on the second anniversary of Geraldine’s death, has been held every year since with growing support from the wider Pilbara community and now has walks held in Newman and Roebourne.

It stops each year at the Redbank Bridge and then at the local cemetery, where special songs are played while the walkers in a powerful moment turn to face and honour those who have been lost.

The winners of the awards will be announced on October 21.

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