Tribute to Paul Wayne Hawker

It is with great sadness that I advise the House of the passing of Paul Wayne Hawker, who was not only a constituent of Campbelltown but a former mayor of Campbelltown and a Vietnam veteran. In fact, he was the first mayor of Campbelltown who was a Vietnam veteran. Tonight I acknowledge some of his achievements. He was first elected to Campbelltown City Council in 2004 and served on the council for 12 years. He was a former chair of the Community Safety and Campbelltown Arts Centre subcommittees. He also served on the Corporate Governance Committee, the City Works Committee, the Association of Mining Related Councils, Macarthur Zone Bush Fire Management Committee, Macarthur Zone Rural Fire Service District Liaison Committee and the Sydney Metro West Region Joint Regional Planning Panel.

He was also the president of the Macarthur Regional Organisation of Councils, a senior director of Local Government NSW and a member of the Ministerial Advisory Group for Fit for the Future. He served as mayor for one year and was very passionate and did so many things. As the local member for Campbelltown, I was delighted and welcomed the opportunity to work with Paul, who I know had a passion to see better outcomes for our city and our town.

When Paul first went to Vietnam he was Lance Corporal Paul Wayne Hawker, Service No. 1202380. From 17 May 1970 to 1 June 1971, a total of 381 days, he served in the very proud 2nd Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment. I lay his certificate of service on the table of the House.

Paul was a good man. He was not just someone who loved Campbelltown; he loved his family. He was passionate about what we needed in our area, and he remained as such. I am so disappointed that I did not get the opportunity to catch up with him before his passing. He achieved so many things on council. I was talking to my colleague Mr Anoulack Chanthivong, who served on Campbelltown City Council with him. When Paul arrived on council, he helped secure Campbelltown's push to become a regional city and did a great job. He helped facilitate upgrades at Macarthur Square to the tune of $240 million—a fantastic place that has done so much. He also supported and worked hard for amenity improvements at various parks, including Glenfield, Ruse, Macquarie Fields, Kentlyn and St Helens Park.

He transferred to the military police after his time in Vietnam. He first enlisted as a lance corporal and discharged as a major. For myself as an enlisted man, yes, he went to the dark side—to the officer levels of the military—but I know why he did: because of the element of leadership that Paul had the capacity to provide. And he did so. I am saddened by Paul's loss. Those on the other side of the Chamber would be aware that he was not on the same side of politics as me. But we were always on the same side about what is right—that is, what is best for Campbelltown—and that is what he did in his public representations in every way. Whether it was in service to his country or his community, Paul always put everyone else first. On behalf of Campbelltown I offer my deepest sympathies to his darling and lovely wife, Sigrid; his children, Aaron and Daryl; and his grandchildren. We, as a city, are lesser without him. May you rest in peace, mate. You gave everything, and we thank you.

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