Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 05 Hansard (Tuesday, 5 April 2005) . . Page.. 1317 ..
the respect and admiration of his colleagues in the Canberra Hospital. I know he will be sadly missed by his colleagues and counterparts at the Canberra Hospital, and I express to them my sincere condolences at the loss of such an esteemed workmate.
I would like to briefly outline to members some of his history, because I think it underscores the significance of the contribution he made to our community locally, as well as the contribution he made at a broader level. Matthew Davey graduated from the Australian National University with a Bachelor of Science with first class honours. He majored in mathematics and neuroscience. He was awarded the University Medal, which is the ANU’s highest award. It is awarded to the top candidate or candidates for the degree of bachelor. He was also awarded the Tillyard prize, which is awarded to the student whose personal qualities and contribution to university life have been outstanding. This is the oldest and most prestigious prize awarded by the ANU and it is the highest honour awarded for contribution to the community and the university.
As Mr Smyth has outlined, Dr Davey also undertook a range of volunteer work, including working with the St John Ambulance, volunteering in the organisation of the International Physics Olympiad and the Australian Biology Olympiad, held here in Canberra. He was a keen judo enthusiast. He was an instructor with the Tuggeranong Judo Club and was, as I understand it, State Judo Champion for the ACT in 1989. Some of his other activities included paragliding, being involved in independent theatre and, as has been mentioned, ballroom dancing. He was someone who lived life very much to the full.
In closing, it is worth highlighting some of the awards that he received. He received the Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Trust Fellow award for research at Cornell University Medical College New York, where he was an exchange student. He received the AMA/JG Hunter research scholar award for research at the ANU. He received the Fellow’s Prize for academic excellence at Fenner Hall, the Australian National University, and the Australian Students’ Prize for Excellence from the federal government of Australia. This was a truly exceptional young man—a young man who was dedicating his life to serving his community and to living life very much to its fullest extent. He will be sadly missed and I extend my condolences, and those of the government, to his family, his colleagues and his friends.
MR STEFANIAK (Ginninderra): Mr Speaker, it is always particularly hard when we see fine young people in the prime of their life, who have done so much to date and who had so much to offer, being killed. We have seen this tragedy of nine young Australians who have laid down their lives in the service of others, and I do not think there can be any finer or nobler sacrifice than that. The Australian Defence Force has a very proud tradition as not only splendid fighters but also of excelling at humanitarian work around the world. These fine young Australians died doing a job they loved and doing it very well. They were bringing help and hope to people who were suffering.
Defence work is very dangerous and, despite all the safety precautions—and we, I think, pride ourselves in this country on taking exceptionally strong safety precautions—there are still accidents, there are still injuries and there are still, tragically, deaths. The Canberra Times a couple of days ago, I think, listed the number of Defence Force personnel who have tragically died in accidents, be it on exercises or on active service. I think it just shows the very nature of the job, working in difficult conditions with often