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Thursday, 6 March 2014
Page: 1948

Mr KEENAN (StirlingMinister for Justice) (09:40): Today I would like to pay tribute to a man of great integrity who was a World War II veteran and a pillar of the Stirling community. Edward O'Sullivan, known fondly as Ted, was born in March 1926 and passed away on 27 December 2013.

I first met Ted just after I became the member for Stirling, and he was a frequent and welcome visitor to my office over the past decade. He was the secretary of the Osborne Park RSL club, a position he held for seven years. Ted ran the local Anzac service at Osborne Park for 10 years and also coordinated the Poppy Appeal collection for the better part of a decade.

At age 18, Ted joined the Royal Australian Air Force as a mechanic and served our country during World War II. Ted was passionate about educating children about the Anzac tradition—as he knew it would be Australia's children who would be carrying on the Anzac message for future generations. Ted established an educational program on behalf of the Osborne Park RSL to encourage local primary school students to become actively involved in the RSL. The program encouraged school groups to visit the RSL throughout the year to look at and learn about the incredible collection of memorabilia located at the hall. The children would then be provided with a healthy lunch cooked by RSL members—Ted was passionate about educating children on the importance of an active and healthy lifestyle as well.

It was my honour to be able to assist Ted through securing a grant from the Department of Veterans' Affairs to help him and the Osborne Park RSL run this educational program for our local kids. Right up until he passed away, Ted was still a very frequent visitor to my office and we were assisting him with an application for the Anzac Centenary Local Grants Program on behalf of the RSL. It deeply saddens me that Ted will not be here for such a significant event in Australia's Anzac history, something he was very proud of.

Ted was not just an active member of the Osborne Park RSL but was also involved in a number of other community organisations throughout his life. He volunteered with the St John Ambulance service as an ambulance driver and was the divisional superintendent of the Osborne Park brigade of St John. He was awarded the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem in recognition of his hard work and dedication. Ted was also regularly involved in training local cadets. Later in life Ted joined the Men of the Trees organisation, working with young children and the community in planting trees all over Perth.

My heartfelt condolences go to his children, Rena and Wayne, and their families. Ted was a hardworking, dedicated man who devoted much of his life to bettering the community, and for that he will always be remembered fondly. He was a very welcome visitor when he came to my office. My electorate staff liked him very much and we will miss his presence and his regular visits. I salute a true gentleman.