Saying farewell to a town stalwart
IT WAS with great sadness that I wrote the tribute to Steve Andrew this week.
It seems like only yesterday I was chatting to him outside his Ocean View Avenue home just days after Cyclone Debbie had decimated it.
Steve was then, as always, upbeat.
The story he told me – about how, even with his home in tatters, he had gone out to source generator fuel and drinkable water for Dr Melissa McCann’s pop-up emergency clinic and visited friends in need – made it to our Defying Debbie cyclone tribute book.
Famously photographed in the act by Courier Mail photographer Liam Kidston, Steve actually became the face of Cyclone Debbie around the world for a while.
To me it is therefore somewhat fitting that his story is forever featured on the pages of a book from which proceeds will be going to help those still in need.
Steve was an Airlie Beach icon who made vast contributions to the local live music and sporting scenes and he embodied the stories of defiance, hope and local heroes our Defying Debbie book brings to life.
It is also fitting that this weekend, when Steve will be farewelled at the Sailing Club, is another large one for live music.
Hats off to Steve and to Whitsunday SESsions.