A HEART-broken Kerrie Benning has described her late brother Wayne Fishlock as a “much loved character”.
The Scone resident, for the past seven years, died in August at the age of 57 after health issues contributed to his short life.
“He’ll be sadly missed,” she said.
“You would’ve seen Wayne some early mornings with his cappuccino and newspaper sitting in the park; or other times listening to his transistor radio.
“He’d say ‘good morning’ to you or ‘what a beautiful morning’ as you passed him.
“Also, he’d have his beret, and back pack, on.
“Unfortunately, Wayne was intellectually-challenged and suffered with mental health issues.
“But, he had a big heart – he was compassionate and loving.
“I would like to thank everyone for their kind words, support and condolences, beautiful cards and flowers, as well as my family, friends and work colleagues.
“There are so many people to acknowledge, from doctors to police, the nurses and staff at Scone Medical Practice, Sally Pereira (Endeavour Group Australia) to the paramedics who worked so hard to bring Wayne back, those at Scott Memorial Hospital and PharmaSave Scone Chemist.
“To you all, a big thank you.
“He was my big brother, as well as a caring brother-in-law, uncle and great uncle.”
Mrs Benning said Wayne had a love of books, DVDs and music.
“He would get into my car with a handful of CDs – it could be anything from the Russian Military Band to Cuban or ABBA,” she recalled.
“Or, he’d play his harmonica.
“Growing up with Wayne [in Melbourne] was never dull as far back as I can remember.
“On weekends, he’d have his fishing net and basket – and we’d go to the Exhibition Gardens to catch yabbies until the garden-keeper hunted us off.
“He’d also collect empty bottles.
“Back then, you got money on returns, so Wayne spent the money on firecrackers.
“He taught me to hold the Tom Thumbs while he lit them, yelling at me to ‘throw it before it blew’.
“I remember the time dad made Wayne a good old billycart.
“He’d say ‘C’mon Kerrie’ and I’d follow him.
“This one time, it was up to the top of a hill.
“Yes, I was his crash-test dummy and my skin was taken off everywhere.
“But, he held me while I was crying until someone arrived.
“Then there were the cowboy and Indian games – I recollect being tied to the clothesline.
“Wayne, in his full get-up (the vest, hat and sheriff badges), would run around making Indian noises.
“Before our mother passed away, I promised her I’d look after him.
“I know in my heart I did that right until the end.”