Pioneer family member dies
ONE of the district's early settlers, and a tireless worker for the community, Mr Bruce King, has died after a short illness.
Mr King, who was 88, passed away on Sunday evening, October 23, in Brisbane's Logan Hospital.
Born in Coffs Harbour in 1917, his family had settled in the district at Boambee some years earlier. Mr King was educated at Boambee Primary School and made his life on the land, growing bananas and small crops, and producing cattle on a 45ha property, bounded by Toormina and the highway.
He enlisted for service in the army after the outbreak of WWII, and served for 15 months before being discharged as medically unfit. He retained membership number 24 of Coffs Ex-Services Club until his death.
In his early years he was very active in the Banana Growers' Federation and the local Bushfire Brigade, and went on to be elected as an inaugural Coffs Harbour director of the Bananacoast Community Credit Union in 1972.
He then became only the second chairman of the credit union in 1976, a position he held for eight years, being described at the time of standing down as being 'very astute and hard-working'. He retired from the board in 1986 after 14 years of service.
Mr King was an active member of Coffs Harbour Rotary Club for more than 30 years, being invited to join in the late 1950s. He is the only member in the club's history to serve two terms as president, and was a recipient of the Paul Harris Fellowship, Rotary's highest accolade for service and dedication to the community.
Mr King married Dorothy (nee Ferris) in 1941, and they celebrated 60 years of marriage before Mrs King's death in 2002. Since just prior to that time Mr King had been living with his family in Brisbane.
He is survived by children Kevin, Chris and Cathy (Erskine), six grandchildren and one great grandchild. Two sisters from an original family of nine children also survive him. They are Nancy Johnson (Adelaide) and Dorothy Carmady (Coffs).
A funeral service will be held for Mr King tomorrow from 2pm at Hogbin Drive Crematorium and Memorial Gardens.