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It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of Freshwater SLSC, Sydney Northern Beaches Branch, Surf Life Saving NSW and Surf Life Saving Australia Life Member, Ray Brennan OAM, who passed away on Monday 31 January.

A fierce contributor to the Surf Life Saving movement, Ray dedicated more than three quarters of his life to both Freshwater and, earlier, North Narrabeen SLSC, where he became a member in 1946 and gained his Bronze Medallion the following year.

In that time, his most undeniable impact was felt by the Nippers. Throughout the junior system, he held the roles of Assistant State Team Manager, Vice President, Deputy President and President over a 10-year period. Indeed, Ray’s unquestioned commitment extended to the two most onerous positions at national level – secretary and treasurer – which he held simultaneously for a period of 13 years.

Ray was instrumental in increasing sponsorship money for the operation of the Junior Association by a factor which was tenfold over the sponsorship figure at the start of his tenure. He then proactively researched the needs of the various State operations and dispersed funding accordingly.

At senior club level, his contribution is also notable. Ray has held positions as diverse as Executive Officer, Committee member, Registrar, Liaison Officer, Committee Chairman, Archivist, Historian, Constitution Review panelist, Centenary Project Chairman, Coach, Fundraiser, and member of numerous working groups.

Ray was heavily involved in the Freshwater club’s 100-year History Book Committee and assisted in the re-writing of the club’s constitution in 2008. He was granted life membership of the club in 2005 in recognition of his many years of involvement with, and contribution to, the club.

In more recent times, Ray was a regular feature of the club’s Sunday morning House of Lords.

On behalf of the Board of Surf Life Saving NSW, we extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to Ray’s family, friends and club mates.

Thursday 3 February 2022