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Byron Shire
April 23, 2021

Mayor mourns staff, shire identities

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Tweed mayor Barry Longland paid tribute to former council staff and leading community figures who have passed away recently.At the start of the new council’s first official meeting on Tuesday, Cr Longland reflected on the passing of the six people and offered condolences to their families on behalf of the shire.

The two former council staff were ranger Greg James and revenue officer Christine Debnam.

Cr Longland expressed sympathy for the ‘sad and sudden loss of Greg, a well-liked and dedicated Tweed Shire Council employee who gave over 20 years of service to the council and Tweed community.

‘I’d also like to express our deepest sympathies to the Debnam family on the loss of Chris, who gave over 19 years of service as an integral member of the revenue and recovery team and will be sadly missed.’

He said historian Ron Johansen’s ‘knowledge and passion for the past will be sorely missed’.

‘Ron was a significant contributor to the history of the Tweed and a wide range of museum and historical projects,’ he said.

‘Environmentalist Edward Paul Hopkins, affectionately known as ‘Hop.E’ also will be sadly missed. He was a passionate contributor to the Tweed community and environment and his legacy will live on in the great work done by the Caldera Environment Centre.’

Cr Longland also praised business leaders Earle and Harry Williams, who died within months of each other this year.

‘The “Williams Sons” were brothers, leading local businessmen and the second generation of their family to lead the successful building supply company, JH Williams and Sons,’ he said. ~ Luis Feliu



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