Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

A Life Well Lived; Loved Ones Gather to Remember Hewitt

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

A Life Well Lived; Loved Ones Gather to Remember Hewitt

Article excerpt

Byline: Amber Hooker

THE cherished memories of a life well lived echoed across the St Paul's Cathedral on Saturday, as family friends and former colleagues gathered to remember Neville Hewitt.

The congregation heard of the Rockhampton icon's lifetime, which encapsulated a childhood on the land, service with the RAAF as a tail air gunner during the Second World War, a long and successful political career, and his legacy of adoring children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Neville's sons Ian, Peter and Rodney Hewitt and his daughter Denise McMurtrie offered tributes to their father, a man who "never let politics get in the way of friendship" and remained "tough and determined", even throughout his final days.

Neville's son-in-law Ian McMurtrie delivered the touching eulogy, which told of a man who lived a long and full life, dedicated to friends and family.

"In fact, right up until just weeks before he died, he would look forward to us taking him down to the Southside Club so he could listen and perhaps join in the bar chatter with his old drinking mates," Ian said.

He closed with the words of a friend in France, who was unable to attend the State funeral which had Rockhampton State Member Bill Byrne speak of on behalf of the State Government, and former minister Robert Schwarten of an "old friend".

"It is indeed a time of sorrow, but we should all celebrate a life well lived. Rest in peace Nev," Ian said.

Neville's son Ian went on to share his cherished memories, and recalled some advice his father had bestowed upon him.

"Always have a beer with someone who may have a gripe with you, before you have a beer with friends," Ian said.

He went on to tell of his father's remarkable story of survival after he was forced to bail out of a plane, shot down over North Africa during his time as a tail air gunner in the Second World War. …

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