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Thursday, 24 November 2011
Page: 13796

Mr ABBOTT (WarringahLeader of the Opposition) (14:01): Mr Speaker, on indulgence, I wish to briefly add to the remarks of the Prime Minister. It is a sad thing to lose a member of the parliamentary family and Maureen Larkham was a member of the parliamentary family, not a member of parliament but one of those people who make the parliament work. Maureen was legendary as someone of kindness, of gentleness and of decency in a parliament which is not always kind or gentle or decent. She stood for all the things that we like to think characterise the people of our country whose welfare we try to advance in this parliament.

I note that Maureen was very close to one of my own staff members, Di Honan. Maureen recently attended Di's wedding and I know Di has been particularly affected by Maureen's passing. Our thoughts are with the family of Maureen—her husband, Geoff; her children, Rebecca and Stephen, the rugby international; and her grandchildren. She will be missed.