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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 06 Hansard (Tuesday, 17 June 2008) . . Page.. 1860 ..


His second marriage to Karen Rush in Washington DC produced one daughter, Jeffie, who is now 28 years old. Like her three older siblings, Jeffie’s academic and career achievements made him proud. In her early growing years she was often to be seen around this Assembly. No matter how busy Trevor was or what his position was at the time, Trevor never failed to drive Jeffie to school every day. During the five years of her university studies he and Jeffie could be seen deep in conversation in some Civic restaurant or other having one of their long weekly lunches. I would like to acknowledge his daughter Jeffie and her desire to be here today. However, just as her father would have done, she has returned to duty in Indonesia where she serves in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

This was the marriage of four happy Washington years, the wild ride into ACT self-government and Trevor’s Liberal political life, including the years of pre and post alliance government. Like all political marriages, it was subject to many external strains and it succumbed to them in 1994. In 1996, Trevor married Sandie Brooke. Sandie was his companion during his turbulent political years after he left the Liberal Party and sat on the crossbench, and she stood for election alongside him when they formed their own short-lived party. She also nursed and cared for Trevor for five years after his stroke, and I acknowledge Sandie and her stepchildren for the love and support that they gave to Trevor.

Many would not know, Mr Speaker, that Trevor Kaine possessed an artistic soul of quite considerable sophistication. He did not flaunt it and most did not know about it, but it was there. He particularly loved stringed music, both classical and folk. He played the violin as a child and did not lose the skill as an adult. He owned a classical mandolin, a balalaika and a bouzouki, which he liked to strum.

He was also an accomplished watercolour painter, and some of the paintings of fuchsias in his younger years are reputed by family members to be quite stunning. I have heard that he may have also, on the back of an envelope, designed the ACT flag. Now, I cannot prove that—if somebody can disprove it, they are welcome to try—but perhaps we could attribute to Trevor also the design of our flag.

He was also a gardener, and the numerous gardens he designed and built over a lifetime were described by family members as seasonal delights of colour and texture. They were just another example of his artistic interpretation of the world that he observed. I certainly saw his gardens in Isaacs and Macarthur, which he designed and created from bare clay, and in these places I enjoyed his hospitality, enjoyed discussions with him and shared his true love of the numbers. And, let me tell you, he knew all about the numbers!

Trevor loved watching football of all codes, whether it was Australian rules, rugby union, rugby league or American gridiron. A glass of wine, cheese and crackers and the football was his fast-track to deep relaxation and retreat from his pressured work life. He was, as Gary Humphries said in his eulogy at Trevor’s state funeral, “a man of powerful passions” and these both defined his political identity and made him, on occasions, very difficult to deal with.

Trevor was very sure of himself and firm in his views. He was often heard to say—you may well have heard it yourself, Mr Speaker—“I’ve only apologised twice in my


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