Vale – Neville (Nev) Norrie
Queensland Teachers' Journal, Vol 124 No 1, 15 February 2019, page no. 6
On 27 December, we farewelled QTU Life Member Nev Norrie, who died after a long struggle with Parkinson’s Disease.
The eulogy, which was presented by Nev’s friend, comrade and fellow QTU Life Member Stewart Rose, is reproduced here as a poignant dedication to a proud QTU stalwart.
“Until his sad departure late last year, Neville was my oldest mate, also my first prac teacher mentor, fellow proud QTU Life Member and long-term, dedicated Labor Party member and enthusiastic campaigner.
"As a teacher, Neville was punctilious, precise and occasionally pedantic – and his catholic vocabulary and encyclopaedic knowledge of history were unsurpassed.
"After observing my hesitant, initial attempts at teaching, Neville devoted sufficient time to explain my deficiencies, but not my virtues – these [few] came later.
"Although I knew little about his private life, my contact with Shirley revealed that Neville was a loving husband and devoted father and grandfather.
"But – as a unionist and State Council member – Neville was a forceful debater and forthright speaker, epitomising the Latin dictum Quod dixi dixi – “What I have said, I have said:” meaning, “I stand by what I have said.” He was rarely contradicted.
"My last contact with Neville was at a Life members’ Christmas lunch about four years ago. By that stage he walked with the aid of a frame, and when – after we exchanged comradely greetings – I asked after his welfare, he replied resignedly” “Up to s**t, mate – I’ve got Parkinson’s disease.”
"Friends, to me Neville was never “up to s**t”, rather he was an outstanding educator, superb scholar, exemplary family man, dedicated unionist and proud Labor devotee.
"To employ a few polysyllabic and bi-lingual terms beloved of Neville, I’ll conclude with an apposite eulogistic enunciation: “Vale, Neville – Adhuc terran non est similis tui ambulant.”