Raiders Launch Appeal To Help Fulfil The Late Kato Ottio's Dream Of Buying His Mum A House

The 23-year-old's family live in PNG

Raiders Launch Appeal To Help Fulfil The Late Kato Ottio's Dream Of Buying His Mum A House Canberra Raiders

The Canberra Raiders have launched an appeal to help fulfil the Kato Ottio's dream of one day buying his mother a house.

Headed by Sia Soliola, the 2018 Raiders playing group and club are hoping their fans will get behind the Kato Ottio Memorial Fund, which will be directed towards the late footy player's family in Papua New Guinea.

"Kato was one of the most humble and wonderful people you could ever meet and his recent passing has had a huge impact on the club and his former teammates," Soliola said in a statement. 

"We've decided to appeal directly to Raiders fans to help us make Kato's dream a reality."

Raiders CEO Don Furner added: "Kato's passing was a tragic way to end the life of a young man with a huge future. The Raiders family is appealing for your support to assist in raising money to support his family."

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Kato's sudden death shocked the rugby league community after the 23-year-old, who had recently signed with Widnes Vikings in the English Super League, collapsed during a training session on January 9, 2018.

His manager, Steve Deacon, told Wide World of Sports that Kato was trying to inspire his younger teammates during an 8km run in his homeland of Papua New Guinea when he fell ill.

"The run was over and a few of the boys walked back while others got a ride," Deacon said.

"But Kato told a few of the players, 'Let's run back'. He wanted to use the professionalism he gained from his time at Canberra to rub off on his younger countrymen.

"He got slower and eventually collapsed. He was unconscious and in a coma and they were not able to revive him."

Kato's mother, Joyce, said that she had been told her son had suffered severe heatstroke.

"He got heatstroke, that's what the doctor said," she told The Daily Telegraph. "I love him so much, he is my everything. I was with him at the hospital and he should be close to me, I miss my son so much."

For more information or to donate to the Kato Ottio Memorial Fund, see the official GoFundMe page.

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