Daradgee State School/Daradgee Environmental Education Centre celebrates 110th anniversary
IN 2021, Daradgee State School/Daradgee Environmental Education C
MEMBERS of the Good Counsel Catholic Parish recently gathered after Sunday Mass for a shared morning tea to acknowledge the valuable contributions of well-loved parishioner Lorna Jones, aged 97, who is moving to Babinda.
Parish Priest, Father Kerry Crowley presented Lorna with a beautiful flower arrangement on behalf of the community, as a token of appreciation for over 45 years of faithful service.
Parishioner and good friend Evelyn Halpin said Lorna was one of the oldest and longest serving members of the church community who will be sorely missed.
Lorna was involved in Sacred Heart Sodality, Catholic Daughters of Australia (which became the Catholic Women’s League), the St Vincent de Paul Society, as well as pastoral care and family groups.
She was also a Eucharistic Minister and Reader when the church accepted lay people as ministers and continued to read at Villa Nova.
She also forged strong friendships and was a great support to the Augustinian priests, Marist Brothers, and Good Samaritan Sisters.
Lorna Jones (nee Merritt), the oldest of four, was born in Mackay in 1924, did her primary schooling in Mackay, and moved to Innisfail in 1938, at the age of 14.
Lorna worked for a dressmaker in Innisfail for a couple of years. At the tender age of 17, Lorna went to Townsville with her grandmother for holidays.
It was during World War II when Lorna met Owen, whom she knew through the Catholic Youth Movement, and who was a soldier in the army about to be posted overseas.
As they exchanged letters for three years, romance blossomed, until the pair met up again at Lorna’s 21st birthday, and in Brisbane when Owen was discharged from the Army.
After the war ended, they were married in Lismore on December 13, 1945, had a honeymoon, and returned to Innisfail in the same year.
The couple loved the land and had a cane farm near the North Johnstone bridge for 10 years, before running a cattle farm at Pin Gin Hill for over 30 years.
Over the years, Lorna and Owen led an active social life and were volunteers for the Innisfail Show Society and the Lady Lions Club, whilst Owen was involved with Innisfail Meals on Wheels and Innisfail Probus Club.
Lorna was the first pastoral carer at Villa Nova aged care home over 20 years ago.
In 2016, Lorna and Owen celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary, before Owen sadly passed away soon after.
For many years, Lorna has been living independently at Warrina Lakes Retirement Village but has made the decision to move to the aged care wing at Babinda Hospital, where she will be close to her good friend and carer Julie Ghidella.
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