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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 4 Hansard (20 April) . . Page.. 941..


MS CARNELL (continuing):

better ways to encourage underachieving students and for compulsory environmental studies for all children. I am sure all members of this Assembly would have spoken to Miss Curley regularly about a number of issues. It was wonderful that up until weeks before her death she was still on the phone regularly telling all of us what should be happening in the ACT. She continued to contribute until her death.

Miss Curley will be remembered for her untiring efforts on behalf of the Canberra community as a whole. As a memorial to her, the ACT Government will be renaming Dairy Flat Bridge after her. I am sure all members join me in expressing our sympathy to Miss Curley's family and friends and in acknowledging the outstanding contribution she made to the Canberra community and this Territory.

MR STANHOPE (Leader of the Opposition): Mr Speaker, I join with the Chief Minister in expressing condolences to Miss Curley's family. It was only in November last year that we stood in this Assembly and congratulated Miss Curley on her 100th birthday. Sadly, today I, along with other members, stand to convey our condolences to Miss Curley's family.

Miss Curley led a rich and rewarding life. Her contributions to the ACT and the wider Australian community were many and varied, and her interest and devotion towards her fellow human beings were selfless and tireless, as is evidenced by the 40 years she spent as a nurse, almost 30 of them in Canberra.

Canberra has benefited from Miss Curley's charitable nature and her philanthropic donation of her 17-hectare family farm at Mugga Mugga, including one of Canberra's oldest houses, as a new environmental education centre. This contribution is not simply a donation to the Territory but to all Australians, and in particular students with a keen interest in Australian heritage. Over recent years, Miss Curley devoted herself to the creation and promotion of the educational centre in order to preserve a fragment of the past for our young people. She committed herself to ensuring that a small piece of history remained so that we could experience the wealth of this pioneering memorial.

Miss Curley's interest in, and commitment to, youth have been a perpetual thread throughout her various life pursuits. Following her nursing career, Miss Curley established a business as an employment consultant and assisted many young unemployed people to find work, emphasising always the importance of job satisfaction. Sylvia Curley has left an outstanding legacy to Australia in her Mugga Mugga property donation and, as the Chief Minister mentioned, had been agitating right up until her death to secure some of the Centenary Foundation funding for this venture. On behalf of the Labor Party, may I express my condolences to her family. Sylvia Curley was an outstanding citizen of Canberra, and her deeds remain an inspiration to us all.

MR STEFANIAK (Minister for Education): I too wish to pay tribute to a fine lady who died at the age of 100. It was not long ago that we were all celebrating her 100th birthday. I recall attending the service at St Christopher's at Manuka in her honour and talking to her at some length there. I think few of us on that day would have thought that she would sadly pass away so quickly. She seemed to be a person who would just go on


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