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Carmen's friends rally to buy her a scooter

Wed 4 Nov 2009 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback

Following a failed fundraiser and a public slanging match afterwards, worried friends of trans-Tasman tranny legend Carmen Rupe have called a truce and are working together to buy her the mobility scooter she badly needs. A new hope: Carmen Rupe may ride again Everyone seems to agree that Carmen had a great night at her party A Night of Glamour in early October, but her all-expenses-paid trip to Wellington for the event left her with less than $500 to replace her broken down scooter with, despite hundreds of attendees paying $20 and being told all funds raised would go directly to the showgirl icon. The night's organiser, 21-year-old Jevan Goulter, apologised for the mismanaged event after Carmen's concerned friends voiced their anger on GayNZ.com's Forum. "The evening itself was a great success as all the guests, Carmen and myself had a fabulous time and there were great shows and people who attended," Goulter says. "In terms of what I had hoped to give to Carmen, that amount was not reached and so in that respect I failed miserably, which I have accepted and fronted up to what has happened." Carmen is 73 years old, lives in Sydney, and has been unable to use her mobility scooter for at least the last month as it has broken, Goulter explains. "Carmen has said that the scooter is completely ruined and cannot be repaired. For her to be able to get around Sydney easily, doing her grocery shopping, visiting people, and outings she will need a new scooter." A ZIPPY NEW SCOOTER? Goulter says a top-quality 'Merits Wrangler' scooter costs AUS$4,750, which is a discounted price for Carmen, which includes a bag for groceries and a flag. "It also has a powerful battery with a lot of power to get Carmen around Sydney. "I know that collectively as a community we can have Carmen back on wheels straight away," he adds. "This is not about anybody being the hero or who helps her first, this is about the community helping our queen, a lot of us might not like each other or get on, but the neutral point where we can all agree is that we all have the same love for Carmen. So let's put the mudslinging on hold while we get these funds together." Carmen's friend Jacquie Grant, who had been the most vocal critic of Goulter's fundraising efforts, has also now pledged $1,000 of her personal cash towards a new scooter. Goulter has pledged $250, and takataapui entertainer Mika has matched that offer. Donations to Carmen's Scooter Fund will be gratefully received by Jacquie Grant - cheques can be sent to J. Grant, Sock World, 75 Revell Street, Hokitika, or send funds via PayPal to kiwi.house@xtra.co.nz, making sure the payment is identified with Carmen's name in the message.    

Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News Staff

First published: Wednesday, 4th November 2009 - 4:20pm

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