John Francis Wild
JOHN Francis Wild was born in the Sunnyside Hospital, at Murwillumbah, on November 28, 1929, and like a lot of men of that era, moved around after leaving school to pursue work or advance their fledgling careers.
John loved to tackle everything he took on with gusto and made sure that he gave everything his best shot.
His first job when he left school was in the men’s wear section of Wilkinson’s Department Store which allowed him to buy the clothes he would need when he was to later start his career with the Savings Bank Sydney.
His first fortnightly wage from the bank, in 1947, was just $11.95.
One of his first jobs in the bank was that he had to, every Monday, after everyone else had gone home, empty and wash all the ink wells (both blue and red) and come to work early on Tuesdays and refill the ink wells and place them on all the desks around the office and in the public areas with fresh blotting paper.
Then in 1952, in spite of his request to remain in the country, John was transferred to the Commonwealth Savings Bank in Martin Place - today, one of Sydney’s busiest thoroughfares.
Then in the 1980s his wife, Oriel, decided that they should sell their home and move to Port Douglas which had a population of only 800 people.
The couple bought a home in Mudlow Street for $75,000.
After the couple did a number of jobs, John was then hired by Barry and Di Mcginn to run the accommodation apartment The White House at the corner of Mowbray and Garrick streets. He did this for 12 years.
And in 1988 he was asked by a local businessman, Grant Lawrence, would he be interested in being a founding member of the Rotary Club in Port Douglas under the sponsorship of the Rotary Club of Mossman. He accepted and the club featured heavily in his life for many years.
In 1990 John was made president of the Port Douglas Rotary Club and he said that this was one of the best times of his life because it afforded him solid involvement in the community which was something that was dear to him as well as “giving me the opportunity to meet a lot of people from all over the world, and to make the many friends I would not have even met if not for the club”.
John passed away peacefully at Ozcare, in Port Douglas on April 5, aged 82 years. He is survived by his wife Oriel, and he is the loved father and father-in-law of Michelle, Greg and Francie, Matt and Tina, and Tim and grandfather of Danny, Julian, Christian, Pia and Pablo.