T W A W K I

The world as we know it

In memorium

At 7.22 on the 22nd April 1982 my older brother Richard Gordon McIntyre died, he has just 22, i was 20. He & I shared a tiny flat in North Bondi which was convenient for his work at Council & my studies at Randwick at the University of NSW. The night before I had stayed with friends at Coogee to do group uni work, as such Rick was alone in Gould St at North Bondi that night.

Unbeknown to me, I walked to uni that morning & attended classes. During the morning I was called down to the head of schools office by the secretary. She wouldn’t tell me why, Silly me wondered what I had done wrong. Upon arriving there 2 federal police officers were waiting for me who advised me my brother was dead & they needed me to come to Glebe morgue to identify his body. I was devastated. i needed & asked for a friend to come with me, which they allowed. When I saw Rick it looked like someone had taken to him with a 4 x 2. He was badly bashed about the head.

The Federal Police then returned me & my friend to the university from where my friend graciously drove me to my mothers home in Mt Druitt where my younger siblings lived with her. As a family we were totally & utterly devastated.

The Bondi Police advised us Rick had died on his way to work in a motorcycle accident on the bend in Bondi Rd. They could not explain how he lost control of his bike, in what was probably slow moving traffic, but apparently we went under oncoming traffic & his helmet came off. The guy who was meant to have hit him, they told us was from England & returned there the next day. Though it was peak hour, they told us there were no witnesses. We asked for an inquest – it was denied. When his bike & helmet were returned the scrapes on the bike were not consistent with it sliding on the ground. The helmet he was meant to have been wearing was an old helmet he never wore since he had bought a new one in the months preceding the accident. His bike was not securely parked at nights as we had no garage. Nothing added up. Years later when paperwork was requested on his death we were told that there was none.

Rick was a wonderful brother in life. At times a little hot headed but a good heart. His life taught us many things – adventure, courage, & imagination. A leader, as kids Rick was always leading us on some crazy adventure, burying treasure maps, camping up the mountains, riding our bikes to friends farms, racing them around abandoned factories, building cubby houses in the bush, performing magic shows in front of all the neighbourhood kids, Air League meetings & parades, voracious reading etc. there is much to be thankful for & to remember with gladness.

Through his death we learned how much as a family we really loved each other. We let go of the petty grievances we had with each other and focused on appreciating & helping each other. Its true often you don’t appreciate the value of someone till they are gone, and you realise life is the same for all of us – there are no guarantees in life – regardless of the circumstances. Life is but a breath but there is eternity in every moment. Enjoy & appreciate every precious moment, love much, fear little, believe more, fight for the truth. In these ways we truly live.

Filed under: Governance

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We fight not to enslave, but to set a country free, and to make room upon the earth for honest men to live in. Thomas Paine

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