Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Bill Remembered for Always Being a Gentleman

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Bill Remembered for Always Being a Gentleman

Article excerpt

WILLIAM (Bill) Darmody was a loving and loyal husband, a devoted father and family man, a committed Christian with a strong sense of social justice ... and a gentleman.

That's how his wife, Hilary Joan Darmody, remembers him.

"Bill related to everyone, no matter what their work or social position might be," she said.

Bill was born in Roma on December 2, 1929, to William Augustine and Florence Elizabeth Darmody (nee Lowry).

He had four siblings -- Monica, Jack, Brian and Tom.

His father was a railway station master and the family moved several times as his father was posted to different places.

When Bill was five, his father died and the family moved to Brisbane.

Later they relocated to Bald Hills, where Bill met his future wife, Hilary Joan (Tarbit).

They were married in Brisbane on June 11, 1955.

A true romantic, Bill used to like telling family (after a Pacific cruise in 2005) that they had spent their 50th wedding anniversary "On a slow boat to China".

This was the title of a popular song in their younger days.

The couple had six children -- Anne, Kathryn, Theresa, Peter, Mark and Fiona.

It was through Fiona that Bill and Hilary became involved with the Endeavour Foundation -- after her death in February 1988 they continued their support of the foundation and became life members.

Bill left school at the end of 1948.

His two elder siblings had left home and he felt he should start work and help his mother financially.

He commenced work as a junior clerk with the Brisbane City Council. During that time he completed his matriculation and civil engineering qualification through night classes at the Queensland Department of Education in South Brisbane.

Then he worked as a cadet draftsman with the Main Roads Department before serving as an engineer in Charleville, Cloncurry and Mackay.

Hilary remembered that, while in Mackay, after their three young daughters had gone to bed, he would sit at the dining table studying, later qualifying for membership of the Australian Institute of Engineers.

He was appointed district engineer in Cloncurry in 1962.

In 1966 he was appointed the district engineer in Toowoomba and in 1968 the divisional engineer of South-West Queensland.

In 1974, he was appointed the assistant commissioner for South-West Queensland and that was the position he held until his retirement in 1988.

Throughout his long career, he said he had seen many changes and rated the most significant achievement as having seen the sealing of the entire road system in the South-West Division. He was proud to receive an award from the (then) Toowoomba City Council "in appreciation for services to the city."

He retired in January of 1988.

When the family moved from Cloncurry to Toowoomba, they bought a house in Parsons St, Rangeville and then had a house built in Blue Hills Drive in Rangeville. …

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