Member Birthdays, Illnesses & Past Members

Member Birthdays

9th Feb 2018 – It was Arend Bleyerveen’s 90th birthday. A cake was produced & Arend blew out the candle after a harmonious rendition of Happy Birthday

20th May 2016 – We celebrated Laurie Power’s 80th birthday with birthday cake and special morning tea. His actual date was 26th May

4th Dec 2015 – We celebrated Phil Laird’s 68th birthday due next Sun 6th Dec

21st Aug 2015 – Ted advised us that is was Alex’s 80th birthday the next day (Saturday 22nd Aug 2015) so we all wish Alex well. We know he was in Canowindra, and noted from the news that NSW has adopted the fish fossil as its’ state fossil

26th Jun 2016 – Ted Tregillgas celebrated his 76th on the 24th and so we celebrated with at the Shed with some cake

Jun 8th Apr 2015 – Stuart Allan turned 70 & made a short thank you speech to the Shed on the 10th Apr about the progress & importance of the Shed in bringing together men from the West Belconnen area. Cake was also eaten with the cyclers at the Ha Ha Bar on the 8th

26 Dec 2014 –  Greg Worthington (Greg1) turned 71

Oct 2014 – Roger Amos turned 67 and Colin Fitzpatrick turned 64

18th Sept 2014 – Greg Hutchison (Greg2) turned 67 – old foggie!

Ernie Brand turned 80. On 21st Nov 2012 Ernie made the big 80. As a celebration of Ernies 80th birthday on 21Nov, his son did a spit roast and then offered the outcome to members after the Fri 23rd meeting. Pictured

Ted Tregillgas turned 73, on Sunday 24th June 2012 and Shed members sang “Happy Birthday” to Ted on 22nd June 2012

Terry Mether turned 70. Terry turned 70 on Fri 21st October 2011. Apparently he shared muffins with a few riders including Stuart on Tues morning 25th in the rain!

Harry Redfern turned 70. On the 17th Nov 2011 Harry hit the mark. We sang happy birthday at the meeting on the 18th Nov 2011

Member Sicknesses or Accidents

29 Jan 2021 – Advised that David Leach is unable to socialise due to immune system issues and Brian Harber was taken to hospital late Thursday night (29 Jan 2021).

20 Jan 2020 – John Arundel. John has been in Royal Melbourne Hospital for the past couple of weeks, following a leg operation to remove a squamous cell carcinoma. It has required a skin graft, and the removal of over 20 lymph nodes from his groin. John is recovering as well as can be expected and is hoping that a drain in his thigh will be removed shortly. He sends his best wishes to all and hopes that we have all been able to cast off our gas masks. 24 Jan 2020. It is advised that John will be in hospital for a longer period.

Aug 2019 – Bill is back cycling so has recovered from his problems. 16th Jul 2019 – Breakfast from Bill – As a thank you for the Cyclists assistance when he had his heart attack, Bill shouted cyclists breakfast on Tues, 16 July at Black Pepper – 29th Jun 2019 – Bill Murray came home from hospital on this Saturday. He had a pacemaker inserted but has further surgery ahead to clear a small blockage that is in a very awkward position to operate on – 24th Jun 2019 (Mon) – The Cyclists presented Bill’s saviours (student nurse Marisa Agostino & member Ian de Plater) with a token of appreciation for providing CPR so quickly & professionally when Bill had his heart attack – 17th Jun 2019 – Bill Murray had a nasty incident during the Cyclists coffee break. Following Bill’s collapse, he was found to be in a very serious condition for several days. Further medical intervention may be required but Bill is going well now. Ambulances also attended very quickly & used a defibrillator with great effect

20th Jul 2017 – David Brand – He was taken to hospital on Sat 8 July with an intestinal blockage. He wasn’t operated on until Sun 16th.  The op was completely successful. He has been in and out of the hospital several times.

17th Mar 2017Rob Mair, long on the ‘sick list’, sent an email to fellow shed members which was read out by Roger. Rob reports that while being heartily fed up with medical treatments he can see light at the end of the tunnel. Rob has been given the thumbs up for his recovery from Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and has now only to recover from a massive abdominal hernia which occurred during his chemo treatment as a consequence of his first abdominal surgery. Rob had surgery on Tuesday to remedy this and is expecting a home recovery of about 6 weeks. After that Rob hopes to return to the Shed

9th Sep 2016 – Reported that Bob Mair was currently on a series of Chemo treatments & looks forward to getting past that & back to the Shed. 2nd Dec 2016 Bob just finished 5 months of chemotherapy for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and is now facing a PET scan and hernia operation before he is hopefully able to return to the Shed in a few months’ time

15 Jul 2016 – Geoff Fiddian – Geoff Grimmett reported on Geoff Fiddian’s progress & how Geoff was hopeful to be back at home soon 22 Jul 2016 – Geoff Fiddian updated us on his health – he still has radiation treatment to come following his successful thyroid operation

1 Jul 2016 – Robert Mair – Roger advised that Shed member Robert Mair who recently underwent urgent bowel surgery due to a painful stricture, is now back home after losing some 36cm of his bowel. He is still recovering slowly from that ordeal. Unfortunately he has been faced with another major hurdle as the surgery also revealed a tumour as well as the stricture & he has been diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma which he has been advised is ‘curable’. He is now about to embark on a chemotherapy program of some months & is hopeful of a good result. Our thoughts are with Robert & we all look forward to a successful outcome

21st Aug 2015 – Sick parade: John reported that Ken Baker, who broke his leg recently, is doing OK, but his leg is taking longer to heal than he would like. Laurie seems to be progressing OK, but he is now in the three legged league, using a walking stick

Phil Hore one of our cycling supremos had a pain in his chest in the week starting 16 Dec 2013, visited the doctor and was dispatched to NCH at Garran where he had a stent inserted in one of his main arteries to the heart

Stuart Allans wife Helen Injured About 25th Oct 2013 whilst driving a support vehicle for Stuart, Phil Hore & Paul McCarthy who were cycling along the Gippsland rail Trail, Stuarts vehicle driven by his wife ran off the road south of Orbost. Helen was injured and taken to Bairnsdale hospital by ambulance. Stuarts vehicle was written off and his new bike slightly damaged. Stuart reported on 4th Nov “She seems to be a bit better each day. More technicolor than black n blue  and the sutures on her arm and ankle are healing nicely. She is in pretty good spirits all things considered. We have been hoping that she would have been transferred to Calvary hosp from Bairnsdale by now to continue her rehab. But bed availability there seems to be the sticking point. We are told that Calvary determines its bed allocation on Tuesday each week.  So lets see what happens today. If  no success I am considering coming home for a couple of days  to catch up with things. Paul McCarthy has very generously let me keep his car here while all this is going on and I am accommodated in Sams cottage, the facility available thru the hosp for friends and relatives of out-of-town patients in the hosp.” Helen returned to Calavary Hospital, Bruce by air ambulance on 8th Nov 2013. Stuart has been very impressed with the Victorian Transport Accident Commission (TAC) that provides full support and expenses to get those injured on Victorian roads back to full health. Helen returned home on 18th November 2013. She has recovered well from these events

John Arundels bike accidents. John Arundels message on his recovery from his bicycle accident and his Big Day Out on 15th July. He also joined us for cyclists coffee at Ha Ha on 19th July and looked quite happy. John can now walk unaided, cycle and is exercising at the gym. John took another fall from his bike near Gungahlin Pond on 12th Jan 2012 whilst we were cycling north along the bike path to Gungahlin, Yerrabi Pond. John suffered cuts to his hands, elbow, knee and also bruised his shoulder and left thumb. However he was able to cycle home and has largely recovered as he is now cycling and walking OK

Greg Hutchisons Bike Accident. On 26th July whilst cycling around Lake Ginninderra Gregs bike hit one of those barriers along the bike path, that sent the bike one way and Greg onto the bitumen. He landed on his shoulder and also scratched his knee and elbow. Gregs injuries have been overcome except for his damaged shoulder. Constant use of a TENS machine and exercise has brought his shoulder and upper arm to a much better state. At 18th Nov 2011 he still has some pain in his upper arm and still has difficulty in putting his right arm behind his back. Greg has consulted a physiotherapist and has damaged rotator cuff muscles

Stuart Allan’s Accident. Our President, Stuart Allan broke an ankle (in three places) during a fall at the yacht club on Wednesday 26th and was operated on Thursday afternoon the 27th Oct. They inserted the right pins and screws and he is in a satisfactory condition. Stuart is out of hospital and home and feeling in good spirits. His ankle is in a plaster cast and apparently he has had some 9 pins/screw etc inserted in his ankle to support its recovery. One wonders if he will ever pass a security screen at an airport without setting off an alarm! Stuart is getting around OK with help and has attended all the meetings. Stuart was seen cycling in mid Dec 2011 and improved well through 2012

Remembrance of Members

Remembrance Daniel Victor Costello (20 Dec 1944 – 22 Oct 2021)

With deep sadness and regret I wish to advise the death on 22 October of Shed member Dan Costello of MacGregor. He was diagnosed with cancer some weeks ago and is survived by his wife Libby and their five adult children. Dan was a wonderful community man having given 30 years of his time in a voluntary capacity to St Vincent de Paul activities in St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Parish, Charnwood. He was a very caring and loyal man – a good friend of Frank O’Rourke for many years. Dan was responsible for introducing the Shed to Frank’s attention, for which he has been most grateful.
Dan’s funeral service will be held at St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, Charnwood, at 10.00 AM on Wednesday 3 November, followed by burial at Gungahlin Cemetery. A ‘wake’ will follow at Belconnen Magpies Golf Club.

Dan Costello

Remembrance Rodney Leonard Jory (26 Nov 1938 – 14 Oct 2021)

Rod Jory passed away on Thurs 14th October at Merimbula where he was in a retirement village close to family, including grandchildren. In April members of Melba Shed and Ginninderra Rotary said “au revoir” to Rod when he left Canberra for Merimbula.  Rod was a member of Ginninderra Rotary Club and a keen supporter, and member of Melba Shed. His presentations to the Shed over the past four years were always informative and entertaining. He used his knowledge and love of science and travel for presentations made on many cruise ship voyages; then adapted for the Shed audience.  Since 1970, when he moved to Canberra and the Canberra College of Advanced Education, now the University of Canberra, Rod held a range of academic and administrative positions until his retirement as a professor in 2001. He is well known to Ian, Luke and other Shedders from this time and from Rod’s involvement in soccer throughout the region.

Rod Jory

He was appointed as Director of the National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) at its inception in 1985 and continued in that position until 2005. The NYSF is still amongst the largest Rotary projects in Australia covering all Districts and most of the Clubs. It is conducted in Canberra every January, initially at University of Canberra then at Australian National University since 2005.

In 1991 Rod was awarded the Rotary District 9710 Vocational Excellence Medal for work as Director of the NYSF and in 1992 the Rotary International Certificate of Appreciation and Commendation for exemplary service to the Programs of Rotary. He was presented with Paul Harris Fellow awards from Rotary districts in South Africa and Australia.
Rod was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 1997 in fitting recognition of his ongoing contribution to science education.
Bob Greeney’s, Barry Howe’s (and Don Gruber’s) involvement with Rod through NYSF over two decades established close relationships with this remarkable man. Rod’s daughter-in-law Jasmine sends this message to all those who supported him.
Thank you for being a part of Rod’s amazing life. He made the most of his time down here. His favourite thing was going for a seafood lunch on a Wednesday. Rod spent his time with the kids attempting impossible puzzles, sitting out in the sun with our dog Francis on his lap, picnics, staring out at the ocean. He loved telling us stories – a fantastic story teller and also enjoyed reading a good book in the sunshine.
Rod’s funeral will be held on Tuesday 26 October at 11:00am at Clavering Park, 428 Candelo-Wolumla Road, Wolumla NSW.

PS. Rod was so keen on Melba Shed and the wakes held for Don Gruber and Clarrie Hockley, that he arranged with Barry Howe to have his wake “after I’m gone!!” The wake was held in the Uniting Church after the Shed meeting on 19th Nov 2021 to celebrate the remarkable life of our friend Rod Jory.

Remembrance Colin Thomas Rea (16 Aug 1942 – 30 Jan 2021)

It was with great sadness that we learned that our fellow Shedder, Colin Rea, died on Saturday 30 January. Colin was known in the community for his volunteer work. In 2007, he started volunteering at Lifeline in the warehouse (where he was also a first-aid officer) and at their bookfairs. In addition he was a member of Lifeline’s planning committee. Karinya was another charity that Colin actively supported. He worked there regularly when the new centre was being established a few years ago.

Colin joined the Shed in October 2010, making him one of the early group of members. Greg Hutchison and Don Gruber, who were both Lifeline volunteers, were responsible for encouraging him to join the Shed. He was a regular at the Friday meetings, arriving in his old (very old!) Corona, which he seemed very attached to.

Colin will be remembered at the Shed as being fairly quiet, but a good bloke who was always willing to lend a hand. He will be missed by his mates at the Shed.

Colin was a loving husband to Sophie (dec) and was cherished by his daughters and families of Anna, Viesha and Helen.

Colin LL Warehouse Feb 2011
Colin EPIC Bookfair Mar 2014
Colin EPIC Bookfair

Remembrance Gregory Michael Worthington (26 Dec 1943 – 31 Oct 2020)

Greg had struggled with health problems in recent times. For several years he has been visiting the hospital regularly for renal dialysis. More recently, he has been suffering from heart problems and was scheduled for a heart operation on Monday.
Greg was one of the early members of the Shed, joining in March 2010. He was an enthusiastic Shedder who was one of the regulars at the Friday meetings and was a great mate to everyone. He was at the Shed as recently as last Friday week for the first meeting after the Covid-19 shutdown.
Greg was one of the Shed’s EasyRiders cycling group, where he was renowned for his recumbent bicycle. A major back injury that resulted from being knocked off his bike by a large dog a couple of years ago curtailed his cycling but Greg was still keen to turn up for coffee and a chat with the cyclists.
Our sincere condolences go to Greg’s wife Katrina and their family. Valé Greg, you will be missed by everyone who knew you.

Greg was the dearly beloved husband of Katrina for 50 years. He was the loving father and father-in-law of Sarah and Martin (Germany), Therese (dec), Stephanie and Richard, Angela (dec), and Rodney, John (USA), Penelope and Peter. A Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Greg was held at St Monica’s Catholic Church Evatt on Friday 6th Nov 2020.

Greg Worthington
Greg Worthington

Remembrance Alexander “Alan” Wareham (27 Feb 1920- 30 Apr 2020)

Alan Wareham, who attended the Shed for a time a few years ago, died at the Sir Leslie Morshead nursing home. He’d lived independently up to 6 weeks ago, just before the great shut down. Alan lived in Victoria all his life, except for his army service, until his family brought him to Canberra in late 2012. He joined the Melba Shed a short time afterwards.

Alan worked as a labourer and then trained as a blacksmith before joining the army in 1940. He served in Britain during the Blitz, in Palestine, Syria and Lebanon before transferring to the Artillery in the 2/7 Field Regiment. With that Regiment he served at El Alamein in 1942 and in the assault landing on Tarakan in 1945. Subsequently he went to University and trained as a civil engineer and later as a town planner.

Alan died two months past his 100th birthday and is survived by a clutch of grandchildren and two great grandchildren. Alan’s son Neil said that his Dad’s epitaph will be something he said to Neil a few months ago: “I’ve seen the most amazing things in my life”.

Alan Wareham

Remembrance Walter Kulesza  (Wally) ( 2 Jul 1945 – 28 Feb 2020)

Wally was diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago.  After spending several anxious months waiting for a precise diagnosis he was put on an experimental drug program in Sydney last year.  Initially the drugs seemed to work but Wally was taken off the program a couple of months ago.

Wally was a great mate to many and an accomplished entertainer.  He was a guitarist with The Second Movement, a band that started in 1968 and played regularly in Canberra and at venues along the NSW south coast until a few years ago. Wally was one of the original members of the Shed, joining in November 2008.  He came regularly to the Friday meetings and was a member of the Shed’s EasyRiders cycling group, although we used to rib him about being a “warm weather cyclist”. He also walked on many Shed walks.

Dearly loved husband of Yaddi. Much loved father and father-in-law of Michael and Karen, Adam and Nicole.  Adored Djiadek of Lachlan and Bryson.  Now in Heaven playing rock and roll with the angels.

Wally at Cooleman Ridge 2013
Wally in front of NPH in 2015

Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Wally was celebrated at St John the Apostle Catholic Church, corner of Chave and Blackham Streets, Holt on Thursday, 12 March 2020 with around 300 people attending. Wally was later laid to rest in Woden Cemetery.

Vale Wally, you will be missed. Shed Google Photos album showing pictures of Wally on some activities

3 Apr 2020 - Yadi Kulesza – Letter of Thanks to Melba Shed

Remembrance John Robert Canning (11 June 1935 – 21 Feb 2020)


It was with great sadness that we learned that our fellow Shedder, John Canning, died last Friday evening (21 Feb 2020). John joined Melba Shed in the early days, in May 2010. He was a strong supporter of the Shed and was a regular at the Friday meetings until a month or so ago when his health deteriorated fairly quickly. John will be truly missed by those who had the privilege of knowing and sharing time with him. Our condolences go to his beloved wife Ching and their family.
A Memorial Service for John was held on Mon 2 March at the North Belconnen Uniting Church.

John Canning

Remembrance John Machin  (21 Nov 1936 – 6 Jan 2020)


John Machin has been ill for several months and, sadly, passed away on 6 January 2020. John joined the Shed in September 2013 and regularly attended on Fridays until his illness resulted in him being admitted to hospital. His funeral service will be at St John the Apostle church, corner of Chave and Blackham Streets, Holt, at 1.30pm on Tuesday 14 January. It was followed by burial at Gungahlin Cemetery and a wake at Kamberra Winery. John’s daughter, Morgan, said that all John’s friends are welcome at all stages. If people prefer, they could go directly from the service to the wake.

John Machin 21 Nov 1934 – 6 Jan 2020

Remembrance Laurence Richard Power (26 May 1936 – 10 Dec 2019)


Laurence Richard Power. It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of our colleague, Laurie Power, ex-President of the Shed and a good mate to all. Laurie joined the Shed in December 2009 and contributed in many ways over the past decade. He was President of the Shed during 2014-15. Laurie was always ready to lend a helping hand and was a keen participant in the Shed’s activities. Even after his failing health slowed him down he managed to get to the Shed most weeks. We would like to extend our sincere condolences to Laurie’s wife Patricia and his family. Laurie’s funeral was at the Chapel at Norwood Park Crematorium on Friday 20 December with 18 Shed members attending.

Laurie Power 26 May 1936 – 10 Dec 2019
Laurie Power 26 May 1936 – 10 Dec 2019

Remembrance Victor Isaacs (1950-2019)


Victor Mark Isaacs – It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of our colleague, Victor Isaacs.  Victor passed away peacefully on 8 October after a struggle with liver cancer. Victor has been a member of our Shed for a little over two years and during that time has contributed significantly with three very well prepared presentations on Canberra Newspapers, on Australian Railways and, as recently as 23 August this year, on Australia’s strange borders and border disputes between the States. We extend our sincere condolences to Victor’s wife Dr Agnes Boskovitz and family. Victor’s funeral was on the 10th Oct 2019 at William Cole Funerals at 60 Nettlefold Street Belconnen.

Photo of Victor Isaacs in memory of
Photo of Victor Isaacs

Remembrance Ian Haynes (1940-2019)


Ian Haynes – It is with sadness that we learned of the passing of Shed member Ian Haynes, beloved husband, father, Opa, brother and friend; artist, bushwalker and historian.  Ian was a regular and enthusiastic attendee at the Shed’s Tuesday morning Coffee and Chat group and will be sadly missed by members. Ian died peacefully in his sleep Saturday morning 15th Jun 2019 at home.  His funeral will take place on Friday 21 June at 10am at The Arboretum in the Margaret Whitlam Pavilion. Shed members are most welcome to attend and to stay for a light snack. Our sincere condolences are extended to Ian’s wife, Karin.

Photo of Ian Haynes in memory of
Ian Haynes

Remembrance Keith Sinderbury (1934-2018)


Vale Keith Sinderbury – Formerly an active member of Melba Shed prior to moving to Junee in early 2014, Keith passed away peacefully on Tuesday 23rd of October 2018, aged 84 years. Beloved husband of Vivienne and dearly loved father of Jane, Mark, and Paul and loving father in law of Greg, Jodie and Sarah. Fond brother of Judith. Granddad to Matthew, Andrew, Peter, James, Emily and Madeline. Keith’s funeral was held on Wednesday 31st October 2018 with a Service of Thanksgiving in St John’s Anglican Church Wagga Wagga with a private cremation following. Keith was an early member of the Shed and was also a very active member of Ginninderra Rotary Club. Keith was also prominent through Rotary with helping with projects supplying equipment and money to colleges in places such as Vanuatu.

Member Keith Sinderbury
Keith Sinderbury

Remembrance Eric Carle (1917-2018)


Long-term Melba Shed members will be saddened to learn of the passing of our former member Eric Carle, on Saturday 11 Aug 2018, aged 101. Eric joined Melba Shed as a member in the early days, and very much enjoyed the activities of the Shed and the company of his fellow members. A vital and still-active man into old age, Eric epitomised the values of a healthy, positive lifestyle. In his mid-90’s Eric presented to the Shed on his early life as a professional fisherman, which had occurred some eighty years before! Eric will be missed by those who had the privilege of knowing him and sharing time, laughs and stories with him. A remarkable life well lived. Our condolences go to the Carle family. Loving husband of Nancy (dec). Loving father & father-in-law of Brian, Paul & Ian, Marilyn, Caroline & Jenny. Pa to Alexandra, Jacqueline, Michael, Scott, Lara, Amanda & Rohan. Grand Pa to Ashleigh, Maya, Blake, Aria, Kynan & Torah A memorial service of thanksgiving for the life of Eric was held at the North Belconnen Uniting Church (opposite the Shed premises) on Friday 24 August.

Member Eric Carle
Eric Carle

Remembrance Don Gruber (1948 – 2018)

Don (Donald Stuart) Gruber (12 Oct 1948 – 3 Jun 2018). It’s with much sadness that we learned of the passing of Don Gruber our Shed’s founder, tireless supporter, mentor & a great personal friend to many of us. Don passed away on 3 June following a three & a half year battle with cancer. During the last month his health had deteriorated rapidly. Don’s ten year contribution to Melba Shed was just one of his community focused activities. He worked tirelessly for Rotary, Lifeline and Greenhills. His enthusiasm and tenacity to ensure the success of all his community activities were appreciated by all who have known him. On the 26th Jan 2017 Don Gruber was awarded OAM for his services to the community – On Friday 28 April the Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove, presented Don with his Medal (OAM) of the Order of Australia at a ceremony in Government House. We have indeed lost a great man. Our thoughts and prayers are with Don’s wife Betty and sons Scott & Phil. Don’s funeral was held at Norwood Park Crematorium on Tuesday 12 June 2018. Afterwards a well catered for wake was held at Melba Shed where a large gathering of those who know Don gathered.

Album of pictures containing Don Gruber on Shed Walks. This covers from July 2010 until Feb 2016Album of pictures containing Don Gruber on Shed Activities (ex Walks) 2009 – 20178th March 2019 –  Dedication of the “Don Gruber Room”  |  Photo Album of the event

Donald Stuart Gruber
Don Gruber

Remembrance of Arend Bleyerveen


Arend Bleyerveen (7 Feb 1928 – 22 Mar 2018).  It’s with much sadness that we learned of the death on 22 March of our colleague Arend Bleyerveen. Arend joined Melba Shed in August 2011 and attended regularly until his recent ill-health. He is survived by John, Robert, Jenny, Alison and their families. Our thoughts and prayers are with them at this sad and difficult time. Arend died at the age of 90, on what would have been his 60 wedding anniversary. His wife, Gloria passed away in 2016. Arend had an interesting life, growing up as a teenager in Holland during the war and having to keep out of the way of the German occupiers. He emigrated to Australia in 1951 working first as a gardener before meeting his future wife, Gloria, who was a nurse. Arend worked in several other roles including as a prison guard and until he retired, as an RTA inspector. He was a very active member of what is now the Kippax Uniting Church since its earliest days in Scullin in the early 1970s. Arend’s funeral service was held at Kippax Uniting Church Centre on Thursday 29 March 2018 and was attended by some 20 Shed members.

Bleyerveen, Arend
Arend Bleyerveen

Remembrance of Gordon Parsons


Gordon Burns Parsons (7 Apr 1933 Hay, NSW – 15 Feb 2018). Members were saddened to learn of the passing of former Melba Shed member Gordon Parsons, on Thursday 15 February 2018. Gordon had been in ill health for some time, and first joined Melba Shed as a member in the early days, in about 2011. While not able to attend the Shed in recent years due to his ill health, Gordon maintained a keen interest in our activities and was a great encourager of those who attended. This quiet, gentlemanly man will be deeply missed by those who had the privilege of knowing and sharing time with him. Our condolences go to his beloved wife Audrey and their family: Loved father of Brett & Bronwyn, Leanne & Russell, Scott & Ingrid; Special grandparent of Matthew, Joshua, Lauren, Nathan, Mitchell, Peta Erin, Hayden, Alice, Maddy, Jack, Harry and great-granddaughter Emmy. Dearly loved brother of Cliff, John (dec) and Elsie. A service of thanksgiving for the life of Gordon was held at the North Belconnen Uniting Church on Tuesday 20 February at 1.00pm.

G Parsons
Gordon Parsons

Remembrance of  Ian Miller


Ian Jeffrey Miller (26 May 1946 – 9 Oct 2017). Members were saddened to learn of the passing of Ian Miller on 9 Oct 2017. Earlier on the year Ian suffered a fall resulting in fractured vertebrae and a broken neck. He was transferred to hospital in Sydney before being moved back to the Rehabilitation Ward at Canberra Hospital in June. Ian joined Melba Shed in November 2015. Our condolences to his wife and family, wife San Neo Ong, children Rene and Hannah. Ian’s funeral was on Monday 16 October at 10:30am at Norwood Park Crematorium.

Ian Miller

Remembrance of  Wal Cooper

Wal Cooper (24/11/1935 – 18/8/2016) It with sadness that we learned of the passing of Wal Cooper on the night of the 18th Aug. Wal Cooper had a stroke 2 weeks before & following a stay in hospital did not regain consciousness. He was a long-time Canberra resident & had served on our Shed Committee. He was active in Rotary & the Australian Rugby Choir. Our sincere sympathies are extended to Wal’s wife Nell & to his family, Louise & Clive, Andrew & Nicole & Robyn & Kirsten & their four grandchildren. Wal’s funeral service was 25 August at 11 am at the North Belconnen Uniting Church, followed by a wake at the Southern Cross Club in Jamison. Many Shed members who knew Wal attended. It is believed around 300 attended. Remembrance Service Wal Cooper | Pics of Wal from Remembrance service program | Google Photos of Remembrance Service

Wal Cooper
Wal Cooper

Remembrance of Ray Nelson


Ray Nelson (9/3/1940 – 30/04/2016) After a long battle with illness from skin cancer Ray passed away on April 30. He had expressed the wish to slip away quietly, and that is how it was. He was very appreciative of the friendship and activities of the Melba shed.

Ray Nelson on ‘Boomerangs were not meant to come back’Ray Nelson Eulogy |   Album of pictures of Ray on Shed Walks

Remembrance of Wally Blumenfeld


Wally Blumenfeld (30/07/1930 – 25/04/2016)  went to Sydney with his son Michael to march in the Anzac Day parade. He and Michael were out strolling on Sunday night when Wally collapsed suddenly. He recovered consciousness, & was taken to St Vincent’s hospital. However, he had another stroke in St Vincents & died later. Vale Wally Blumenfield written by Lachlan Kennedy President, Canberra Cross Country Ski Club.

Poem about Wally Blumenfeld by Harry Redfern | In Loving Memory of Walter Blumenfield

Wally Blumenfeld

Hans Schmid


Hans Schmid (29/4/1930 – 22/3/2016) aged 85 passed away in March 2016. It was with sadness that Roger announced the recent death of our fellow Shed member Hans Schmid. Hans first joined us at the Shed in March 2014 and he will be missed.

Hans Schmid
Hans Schmid

Remembrance of Jim Greethead


James Keith Greethead (1940 – 29/09/2015) It is with sadness we have learnt of the passing of Jim at home on 29th Sep, age 75 who previously attended the Shed. He is the much love husband of Bernadette, father of Debbie and Linda, & Grandfather to Adrian, Rhiannon, Stephen, Jess, Josh and Jordan. The funeral service was held in the Chapel of Norwood Park Crematorium, Mitchell on Fri 9th Oct 2015

Remembrance of Clarrie Hockley


Clarrie Hockley (13/03/1928 – 09/05/2015, 87 years) It is with great sadness that we learnt of Clarrie’s passing early on Saturday 9 May after a brief illness. Clarrie – husband, father, army officer, educator, Rotarian &  undoubtedly one of nature’s finest gentlemen was a great supporter of our Shed & made a very significant contribution from our very earliest days. He leaves behind a great many friends. We will never forget his sincerity, his humility, his dry humour & his good nature. Our Shed and members extend our sincerest sympathies to Clarrie’s wife Iris & his family; daughters Kerry, Sandra, Gina & Jenny, along with five grandchildren. Clarrie’s funeral was held at Wattle Park Uniting Church on the Barton Highway, just past Hall, on Monday 18 May, commencing at 1:00pm.  He was buried at Gungahlin Lawn cemetery Ex Service men’s section. After a celebration of Clarrie’s life was held at the Shed

Clarrie Hockley Nov 2009
Clarrie Hockley Nov 2009

Remembrance of Tom McDonald


Tom McDonald (26.1.1939 – 6.10 2014) Tom McDonald died suddenly on the morning of 6th Oct 2014. Tom who had a recent hip replacement, was at last Friday’s Shed meeting, 3rd Oct and is a 50 year friend of Bob Wills. Our thoughts & prayers go out to Tom’s wife Judy. His funeral service was be held in the Chapel of Norwood Park Crematorium, 65 Sandford St, Mitchell on Thursday October 16 commencing at 10.30am

Tom McDonald
Tom McDonald

Remembrance of Lyndley Alan (Lyn) Craven, Dip.Hort.Sci., M.Sc.


Lyn Craven (1945 -2014) passed away on 11th July 2014. It is with a great deal of sadness that we learned of Lyn Cravens passing away on Friday 11th July after a long and difficult illness. Until he retired Lyn was Principal Research Scientist at the Australian National Herbarium at CSIRO. Lyn is fondly remembered by many Shed members. He is greatly missed by all and we offer our condolences to Lyns wife Kirsty, son Ross, daughter Catherine and grandchildren Mia and Scott. Lyns memorial service was held at 10:00am Friday 18 July 2014 at North Belconnen Uniting Church with a large number of people attending. Info on Lyn  Lyn commenced with the CSIRO in 1964 in the plant taxonomy unit of the New Guinea Survey Group, Division of Land Research & Regional Survey. This unit formed part of the Herbarium Australiense (now Aust National Herbarium, Centre for Aust National Biodiversity Research). Duties included botanical support for land resources surveys in New Guinea. He left the CSIRO in 1967 to study horticulture at Burnley Horticultural College, Victoria, between 1968 and 1970. He was briefly employed by the Parks and Gardens Branch, Dept Interior, Canberra, part of which time in the Aust National Botanic Gardens herbarium (CBG), then re-employed by CSIRO in the Aust National Herbarium (CANB) from 1971, where he remained until his retirement in 2009. Lyn continued his association with CSIRO as a Post-retirement Fellow, working actively on a range of taxonomic projects. Lyn\’s major research efforts were focussed upon the systematics of Melaleuca and Syzygium (Myrtaceae), and their respective allies. Other research groups include Hibiscus & Australian Gossypium (Malvaceae).

Lyn Craven
Lyn Craven

Remembrance of Edward (Ted) John Gardner


Edward (Ted) John Garner (1937-2014) passed away on 14th Feb 2014. It is with sadness we advise the passing away of Shed member Ted Gardner. Ted pased away peacefully on Friday 14th Feb 2014 aged 76. He was the much lover husband of Elaine (dec), father and father-in-law of Jeffrey, Natalie and Carl, and Tracey and Ian. A memorial service for Ted will be held in the Chapel of the Norwood park Crematorium, Sandford St, Mitchell on Friday 21 Feb 2014 commencing at 1.30PM. Ted\’s son Jeffrey has invited Shed members to attend. A wake will follow hopefully at the Belconnen Bowling Club, Hawker, but this has yet to be confirmed.

Remembrance of John Armstrong


John Armstrong (1934-2013) passed away on 30th Sep 2013. John was known to some members & had attended the Shed once. John led a full and interesting life. He was born in Peterborough UK & came to Australia in 1964 and worked for CSIRO and ANU in Canberra. During that time he had worked on the black box flight recorder. John was an avid bushwalker & mountaineer, climbing in the Himalayas, UK & Australia. He was prominent in the early rock climbing years around Canberra including Booroomba Rocks. He discovered the Orroral Ridge rock climbs (Legoland area) and did some of its first climbs. He was quite innovative at designing some interesting climbing chocks. In more recent years he had been in the Woodcraft Guild & Majura Mens Shed & built many things for many people, particularly carved wood items. The Guild are planning to develop an annual award for its members to be called the John Armstrong Award. John had also been a member of the Lifeline BookWarehouse team since 2009. He attended the last bookfair and is remembered telling stories & tallying books on Sun 29th, one day before he passed away. He is remembered by his family: his wife, son, two daughters & 4 grand daughters, as well as numerous friends & colleagues. A memorial service attended by 100+ people was held at Norwood Crematorium on 9 October.

Remembrance of Ken Stidworthy


Ken Stidworthy (29.10.1945 – 23.09.2013) passed away on Mon 23rd Sep 2013. Ken joined our Shed in April 2011 and was always willing to lend a hand. We offer our condolences to Kens family. Kens funeral was held at the Mitchell Crematorium Tuesday 1 Oct (8 members attended with Blair Howden giving the eulogy) Ken was born in Kalgoorlie Western, Australia and grew up at Kwinnana, near Perth. He joined the public service in 1964 workinng for Bureau of Census & Statistics. In 1966 he did national service. After being at Woomera, he joined Dept of Cival Aviation, met his first wife Penny Cook and moved with DCA to PNG where his children were born. He returned to Aust in 1974 to Adelaide working for DCA and undertook an Accounting degree atatUni of Adelaide. In 1983 he moved to DCA HQ in Canberra. In 1985 whilst living at Page he separated from his wife. He met his 2nd wife Pauline in 1988 and then worked with the SMA at Cooma. In 1991 he returned to Canberra and lived at Macgregor working with the ACT Schools Authority. In 1992 he moved to the Canberra Theatre Trust and then in 1993 to Project Coordination. In 1994 he joined the BCS as Director Corporate Services until 2006. He met his new partner Anne Dowling in 1999.

Ken Stidworthy
Ken Stidworthy

Remembrance of Max Huntington


Max Huntington (8.07.1933 – 13.08.2013) passed away on 13th Aug 2013 quietly that night. Max was a member of the Shed since 2 Sep 2011. He is survived by his wife Jill. He was born at Randwick (Sydney) and grew up at Mittagong. In his teens the family moved to Redcliffe (Brisbane). He studied engineering at Queensland University. Max worked in Melbourne and eventually Canberra. Here he joined the Canberra Anglers Club and was their president for many years. After retirement he put his engineering skills to work with TADACT (Technical Ais for the Disabled). He also spent several years on the committee of the Hackett Community Association and was its Deputy Chair for 2 years Notes from memorial service to Max

Max Huntington

Remembrance of Erik Ingo Hofmann


Erik Hofmann ( 3.11.1939 – 29.5.2011) was a member of the Shed for a couple of years before he passed away on 29th May 2011 after suffering for some time with terminal cancer. Erik was a passionate man and enthusiastic Shed member and would engage in lively discussion that often occurs at our sessions. Erik was one of lifes characters and he will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with Eriks wife Reinhild and his family. A service to remember Erik was held at the St Michaels Church in Kaleen on 6th June 2011 attended by more than 100 people including 14 of our members. Pictured 2011

Erik Hofmann
Erik Hofmann

Remembrance of Albert Muggleton


Albert Muggleton ( 14.6.1926 – 26.12.2011) Albert was a regular attendee at the Shed until several months ago when he fell at his house. He had been in Canberra Hospital since that time, unable to walk. About a week before Christmas he was moved, with his wife Sheila, to a nursing home at Erina, near Gosford near where his daughter Michele lives. Unfortunately soon after Albert Muggleton passed away on Boxing Day 2011. A memorial service was held on 30th Dec at 10AM at Greenway Chapel & Memorial Gardens, 460 Avoca Drive, Green Point. Web notice Albert was a Prof at the ANU and has a background in Nuclear Science.Albert Muggletons Illness. On 18th Nov 2011 we discovered that Albert fell about 2 weeks before that date and broke some vertabrae and was then in Canberra Hospital. Alberts background was as an engineer, physicist, and researcher in nuclear physics at the ANU. As reported by Geoff Grimmett, I took the card on a visit to Albert at Canberra Hospital at lunchtime today (ed note this was Christmas Day 2011). To my great surprise I was informed Albert had been transferred suddenly to a nursing home in Gosford less than a week ago. Apparently a vacancy came up suddenly and he was only given a days notice before the move was on, so it was all very quick. Not sure how they transported him as I saw him quite recently and they still hadnt organised a chair for him at that stage (which he was very much looking forward to). This is of course was good news for Albert in that he would have been in Gosford where his other daughter lives with her family, and Albert’s wife (who has dementia) could join him in the nursing home. I think in the end he was quite looking forward to being finally settled there. Pictured

Albert Muggleton

Remembrance of Peter ‘Snusher’ Davis

Peter Davis (17.12.1945 – 16.7.2010) was a member of the Shed for several months before he passed away on 16th July 2010 after suffering for some time with terminal cancer. On several occasions he stood tall in front of the members and informed us of his situation and what options were available to him. It was only in his later days that we became more aware of his walking passions and discovered his walks blog. A service to celebrate Peters life was held at the North Belconnen Uniting Church on 21st July 2010 As a memorial to Peter we will try and incorporate some of his walks in our Shed Walks. The Committee also decided that in July the Shed will run a “Peter Davis Memorial Walk”. It will be a normal type of Shed walk and not too strenuous. Your thoughts and ideas are welcome on this. Lynne Davis, Peters wife joined us for our walk to the Molonglo and Misery Hill on 20th Sept 2010. The information on the walk is on the Walks page under Walk 9  Walks 2010-13.  Lynne has penned the attached interesting Notes on the walk and some history of the Misery Point and adjacent Molonglo area Inaugural Peter Davis Memorial Walk.

Peter Davis June 2009
Peter Davis June 2009

Remembrance of Peter ‘Snusher’ Davis Pt 2


On Thursday 21 July 2011 we all enjoyed the inaugural Peter Davis Memorial walk in honour of our former Shed member. The walk was undertaken on a nice winters morning with 34 people participating. Peters widow Lynne attended with several other wives and friends. We commenced the walk at the Hall Shed and undertook the Hall Village historic circuit walk. After completion we had morning tea at the Hall Shed with several Hall members including Mike Fitzpatrick, Alistair Crombie and Bob. The walk was a relatively easy one of 4.7Km. We looked at the historic Hall Village Well and the Memorial Avenue of trees for the fallen local men from WWI and despite a few minor injuries we all had a great day. We even rated a mention in the Hall & District News. Details on Walks 2010-13 No 29. 19th July 2012 – Peter Davis Memorial Walk. Details on the Walks 2010-13 look for walk No 50. It is with sadness that we advised that Lynne Davis’s Dad died peacefully on the night of the 21st July in Brisbane after suffering a stroke a week ago. Geoff Grimmett sent  a card to Lynne on behalf of the Committee and Members of Melba Shed 18th July 2013 – Peter Davis Memorial Walk. Details on Walks 2013-16 look for walk No 72. 17th July 2014 – Peter Davis Memorial Walk. Details on Walks 2013-16 look for walk No 95. Lynne is happily ensconced in Melbourne and walks regularly with a ladies walking group at Bentleigh. Lynne wrote on 19th July 2013 “I go on fortnightly walks on a Tuesday afternoon around Port Phillip Bay and its all very flat and easy walking. This week Parkdale along the beach front track to Mordialloc, where there are lots of boats moored. A coffee stop at Mordialloc and chat before the return walk.  This is a big group – 25 this week walked – retired  people who belong to the Brighton Bayside Life Activities group.  Like the Mens Shed there are lots of sub groups, a weekday and weekend cycling group, a golf group, book reading groups, one mens and one ladies, dining out for lunches and dinners, breakfast club, etc and you can get as involved as you wish with the various activities.  Everything has food involved, coffee or meals, and sociable friendly people.  I so enjoy having Port Phillip Bay and the water just 15 mins drive away from me and walking and seeing it in all different moods”. 16th July 2015 – 5th Peter Davis Memorial Walk. Details on Walks 2013-16 walk No 118.

Peter Davis May 2010