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Monday, 22 September 2014
Page: 9954

Mr O'DOWD (Flynn) (13:50): It is with sincere sadness that I speak of the death of Cynthia Williams. Cynthia was a prominent member of the Gladstone community. She was a much loved member of the Williams family, the Indigenous community of Gladstone and the Gladstone community as a whole. At 69 years of age, she sadly lost a long and courageous fight against cancer. She passed away on Wednesday, surrounded by friends and family. Cynthia was a shining light for the Gladstone regional community. She was never the one to dwell on the negatives. Cynthia will be remembered for her optimism, care and compassion for so many, young and old. She nurtured the development of countless young children—locally and outside the area—for 25 years. She worked in many schools in the Gladstone region.

Cynthia was named NAIDOC Elder of the Year just a few months ago at an event which I attended. It was a recognition that she so richly deserved and of which she was very proud indeed. I extend my sympathies to her husband, Cedric, her children and her grandchildren. A memorial service and interment was held earlier today in Gladstone. Unfortunately, I could not attend because of my duties here.