Speeches

In memory of Joy Gavin

May 23, 2018

Dr CHALMERS (Rankin) (13:33): Some people are irreplaceable, the mark they leave on a community indelible, their contribution unforgettable. I want to tell the parliament about Joy Gavin because she was one of those people. We lost her earlier this month when, after 16 years of surgeries, radiation, chemotherapy and repeatedly outliving prognoses, the cancer finally prevailed.

Joy lived in Springwood in my electorate for 40-odd years and was such an instrumental part in the Special Olympics movement in our area and, before that, out west. She started the swimming program at Logan over a decade ago and was a coach and mentor since then. She volunteered as treasurer and registrar in the basketball for almost as long, and that's how I got to know her. Among the many reasons basketball raining at Special Olympics Logan was so welcoming was because, more often than not, one of the first faces you'd see was Joy's. She could smile even on the days you knew were difficult for her.

Our Special Olympics family will miss her a great deal. We send our love to Cedric; Amanda; my friend and sometimes teammate, Paula; and her two grandkids. We make this commitment: we will surround Paula with the same dedication, support and affection that Joy surrounded so many others with. We will be warm and welcoming like her, and we won't ever forget Joy Gavin and what she did in our community.

WE'LL PUT PEOPLE FIRST