By Joe Montero: President of Fair Go For Pensioners (Victoria)
Recent weeks have seen the passing away of two stalwart and active members of Fair Go For pensioners. The first to leave us was Claudio (Claud) Antonelli. The second was Frank Cherry.
Claude was an active member and sometimes quiet achiever representing the Unitarian Church. Claud was always there to lend a hand. When he spoke, people listened. At the time of his passing, he was one of our vice presidents and therefore member of the executive Committee.
He came to Australia form Italy as a young man, settled in quickly and saw himself as an Australian first. Another side was that he never lost his passion for standing up against injustice and those hurt by those in authority, He joined his union At work, became a delegate and eventually an organiser with the them tramways union, and was involved in his local residents association and much more.
Frank had his own history. He served many years as an official of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union. And his involvement didn’t stop here. Frank spent a lifetime active in a range of social causes like the movements for peace, justice, and a sustainable future, where he often played a leadership role.
Frank, along with his wife Cath, was one of the leading founders of Fair Go For Pensioners. The energy they put into this was incredible and pulled everyone lese along to make considerable achievements. He served as Victorian President more than once and took up other roles.
Our condolences have been passed on to the wives and families of both of these men.
Both leave behind a caring family, hurting by their loss, but having many wonderful memories. Claud and Frank also touched all those who came into contact with them.
There is an old wisdom that says that someone who has led a life for others causes the most grief when they leave us. They leave a hole that will never be filled. But they live on in the memory of those they leave behind. Through this, they gain a kind of immortality. They continue to influence our lives.
Those who live selfishly and do nothing for others cause much less grief and are soon forgotten.
Claud and Frank were definitely of the first type. We honour them best by copying their example, living the most worthwhile life possible, and striving till we too have an impact by making world a little better for our being here and are remembered when we are here no more.