Ms TIERNEY (Western Victoria)– Kath Hamilton died recently, and my husband and I along with many other Labor members of Parliament attended Kath’s funeral in Morwell to pay our final respects for the rich and deeply committed life that she led. Kath was a true believer — not in the popular sense of the word as it is bandied around, but in the sense that she believed that all people, regardless of religion, gender or colour of skin, should be given the opportunity to advance themselves in this great country. She lived and breathed equality. She was a tireless campaigner, along with her husband Keith, who was a minister in the Bracks government, to ensure that the population of Gippsland was not left behind as the nation moved forward.
Those of you who had the privilege to know the Hamilton family will be aware of Kath’s fierce campaigning skills and relentless drive to ensure that working people within her community were given a focus. She did this through her community work and her support for the Labor brand within the area. Everyone who knew Kath knew that she did it all with a sense of style and humour that resonated with all those who came into contact with her.
The best way to describe Kath’s life would be: a loving mother, wife and grandmother; someone committed to the Labor cause; a tireless egalitarian; a fierce campaigner; and someone to be very, very proud of. Kath Hamilton was simply adored, and she will be missed by all those who knew her.