Aslan Shand and Philippa Clark
Former Deputy Prime Minister and MP for Richmond, Doug Anthony, was farewelled at a state memorial service in Tweed Heads on Thursday.
Dignitaries including John Howard and Prime Minister Scott Morrison were among the attendees who paid their respects to Mr Anthony at the Twin Towns Services Club.
Tweed Mayor Chris Cherry told Echonetdaily: ‘It was a moving ceremony, with many friends, colleagues and family sharing insights into his life and passion.’
‘Doug Anthony was a statesman, a quiet achiever with no airs and graces. His love for his family, and for the Tweed was evident in all of the reflections made. He leaves an amazing legacy in his family but for the wider community he has left us with our incredible Tweed Regional Gallery and a passion to protect and advance agricultural Tweed,’ Cr Cherry said.
Tweed MP Geoff Provest said: ‘It was an honour to attend the State Memorial Service honouring the legacy of the Rt Hon Doug Anthony, the former Deputy Prime Minister and long-standing Member for Richmond. The service was a fitting tribute recognising a life spent in service to his family, his community and his country.
‘Doug Anthony reached the heights of power but remained a quiet, modest man who continued to serve the nation through his generous philanthropy, much of which was not widely known. Vale Doug Anthony and thank you.’
Mr Anthony served as MP for Richmond from 1957 to 1984, led the National Party from 1971 to 1984 and served as Deputy Prime Minister under John Gorton, William McMahon and Malcolm Fraser.
At his memorial service, he was remembered for running the country out of a New Brighton beach shack during summer holidays.
Mr Anthony died in the town of his birth, Murwillumbah, on December 20. He was 90.
Politicians, art lovers pay tribute
Tributes to the former MP flowed from local political and arts industry figures following his passing.
Kevin Hogan, federal MP for Page, said: ‘I always felt I was in the presence of a legend when I was with Doug. He was always easy with a warm smile and interest in how you were going.’
Tweed Regional Gallery Director Susi Muddiman OAM said: ‘Doug was a wonderful supporter of the Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre.’
‘Doug and Margot’s donation of land from their farm – the spectacular site where the Gallery is now situated – will forever shine as the ongoing legacy of Doug’s extraordinary commitment to enriching the lives of so many Australians. He will be greatly missed,’ Ms Muddiman said.
Justine Elliot, current MP for Richmond, remembered first meeting Mr Anthony when they were both supporters of the Republic Yes campaign in 1999. She said Doug and Margot Anthony were ‘known for their generous spirit.’
Mr Anthony is survived by his wife Margot, his children Dugald, Jane and Larry (who succeeded him as Richmond MP), their spouses and his nine grand-children.