THEY had spent the day in Sydney taking in the sights and watching the Lion King stage production.
But when Jade Marr and her two young children Kendall, 10, and Jackson, 7, hopped onto a train bound for Newcastle on Wednesday afternoon they said it felt like stepping onto the set of a movie.
‘‘It’s really hard to explain,’’ the Warners Bay mother of two told the Newcastle Herald last night.
‘‘It’s like you were watching it, but it wasn’t real. It was unbelievable to think somebody would say those things and act like that.’’
The trouble started at Central railway station when Ms Marr, her two kids, her mother Julie Phillips, Ms Marr’s sister and her children boarded the 4.15pm train to Newcastle.
Not far behind them was a 55-year-old who identified herself as Sue Wilkins.
The video of her vile, racist and expletive-laden tirade would go viral by the next morning.
Ms Marr said her mother was sitting with three of the children on one seat in the packed carriage when Mrs Wilkins approached.
‘‘She walked straight on the train, looked at my mum and said ‘get your f...ing bogan children off the seat’,’’ Ms Marr said. ‘‘Then she said ‘there are people here that need to sit down, I want to sit down’.’’
Ms Marr said Mrs Wilkins began swearing and responded to her request to stop by ‘‘screaming the f-word in my son’s face 10 times. She said ‘you need to learn this word kid’.’’
WATCH THE FULL TIRADE HERE (LANGUAGE WARNING):
Ms Marr said her children were ‘‘frightened’’ by Mrs Wilkins’s behaviour and ‘‘terrified’’ when she said she was going to call the police on them for not giving up their seats.
Ironically, the children, who Ms Marr described as ‘‘polite and lovely’’, moved later in the journey to let two elderly women sit down.
‘‘I wasn’t going to make them move, I wasn’t going to allow them to be bullied into something,’’ Ms Marr said. ‘‘The kids did the right thing and I really didn’t want them to see someone doing the wrong thing get their way.’’
Ms Marr said Lake Macquarie police visited their home at Warners Bay on Thursday to put the children’s minds at ease.
‘‘They were great, they just made sure the kids knew they weren’t doing anything wrong,’’ she said.
As passengers began filming Mrs Wilkins’s behaviour, she began to turn her attention on others, including one man who was sitting with a woman of Asian appearance.
‘‘Who is this little jerk-off ... he can’t even get a regular girlfriend. It is so sad,’’ she said, going on to mock the woman’s language and facial features.
Ms Marr said her children started crying then and couldn’t understand why her race mattered.
Police spoke to Mrs Wilkins when she alighted at Strathfield in Sydney’s west.
She was allowed to leave, but police said on Thursday – after the video of the racial rant went viral – that Mrs Wilkins would be charged for her ‘‘abhorrent and unacceptable behaviour’’.
Mrs Wilkins apologised on Thursday to the woman of Asian appearance, saying she was deeply ashamed of her behaviour. She had had a rotten day and had been scammed out of $100,000 from a man she had met on a dating website, she said.
Ms Marr said Mrs Wilkins hadn’t apologised to her children.
‘‘It sounded like she really wanted to hurt people’s feelings,’’ Ms Marr said.
‘‘People need to be accountable for their actions and their words, she will definitely have to live with that now.’’
FROM WEDNESDAY: POLICE will prosecute the woman who has apologised for a racist rant on a Newcastle-bound train.
Identifying herself as Sue Wilkins, the 55-year-old has said she will seek counselling over her diatribe, which has received widespread attention on social media.
Describing what she did to ninemsn, Ms Wilkins said "it's not nice what I did to that lady".
"It wasn't nice to say that to her because it's not nice when people say that to me ... call me white trash and fatso," she said.
"I know how it hurts and I shouldn't be saying it to other people."
"I had a rotten day, I've been chasing work for quite some time now. It's awful what I said to that woman, I do agree," Ms Wilkins said.
"There's no excuse to rant at people like that."
"It's awful and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy, regardless of any race."
“CAN’T you get an Aussie girlfriend? You had to get a gook,” this was just part of a shameful and racist tirade delivered by a woman riding on a train on the Newcastle line.
The woman, who appears to be in her 50's, was upset because other passengers would not give up their seat for her.
The woman first takes aim at a man who is understood to be sitting next to an Asian woman.
“Look at the bogan, he has got a gook.”
Gook is a derogatory term referring to Asians which came to use during the Vietnam War.
Her abuse then shifts to the woman.
“Why did you come to this country? This is our country.”
The woman then attempts to imitate the passenger’s accent.
Other passengers quickly rush to the couple’s defense telling the woman to “shut the **** up.”
Even youngsters are not spared her wrath as she verbally attacks a mother because her children are seated.
The woman is seen calling the police asking for them to board the train at Strathfield.
On the video she can be heard telling the police her name is "Sue Wilkins".
The incident was filmed by a passenger and uploaded to YouTube took place near Strathfield after the train departed from Sydney.
Police are now calling on anyone who may have witnessed the incident or recognises the woman in the video to come forward.
However, the exact date the incident occurred has not yet been released by police.
Police will be addressing the media today about this matter at 1pm on Thursday.
Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.