OLATHE, Kan. (KSNW) — A Kansas woman who now calls Australia home is stuck in the Sunflower State. She’s been trying to get back to the continent for more than 12 months.
Katie Morris was born and raised in Olathe, Kansas. In 2013, After graduating from the University of Kansas, she moved to Australia to work for an advertising agency. She has lived there since on a work visa.
Morris returned to Kansas in March of 2020 to help out a sick family member. At the time, she thought she would be here for less than two weeks. However, hours before she was supposed to fly back to Australia, the continent closed its borders due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I would’ve had to have been like at the airport at 3:00 a.m. boarding a plane when they made this announcement,” Morris explained.
Stuck in Kansas, she has managed to work remotely, but it isn’t a kind schedule due to the timezone differential.
“6:30 at night to about 3:30 in the morning,” Morris added.
Morris has tried to get back, reaching out to anyone she can, But it hasn’t happened. Making her leave behind her home, her belongings, and her dog, Moose.
“He was named after Mike Moustakas,” Morris said, referring to the former World Series Champion with the Kansas City Royals.
“My friends moved everything out of my house,” she explained. “We basically donated all of the furniture in the kitchen and everything. I’m lucky I had my friends. I don’t know what I would’ve done without them.”
One positive from Morris being stuck in Kansas, she was able to help her sick aunt.
“I was a [donor] match,” she said. “We did the transplant in June and she is now 100% cancer-free. It was an amazing life-saving surgery for her. There are no regrets for me coming over for that.”
Morris is now hoping for the best, but unsure of what her future holds.
“It’s been over a year now and no one has opened my visa application,” Morris noted. “If no one even looks at it and then it gets pulled, and then this whole year was for nothing, that would be so devastating.”