JOHN Sheehan of Heathcote passed away on January 31, aged 82.
His death was the result of a fall outside his home.
Originally from Toolleen, John was known from a young age as a genuine, humble family man, who worked hard both for himself and the community. John really was admired by all.
He left his mark in many paddocks in the Eppalock Catchment Project of the 1960s and 1970s. He worked as a plant operator and truck driver in the Soil Conservation Authority’s works team.
From the late 1960s he was also trusted to drive SCA’s mulch-spreader truck and trailer throughout Victoria — to help revegetate exposed road batters and earthen construction sites.
This mulch-spreader was a specially constructed unit which chopped hay, then, with added grass seed and bitumen emulsion, sprayed out this protective mix to grass-up exposed soil sites.
One specially challenging role for John was travelling to the Victorian Alps to use the mulch-spreader on steep, freshly groomed ski slopes — sometimes with a four-tonne truck and John, as operator, being lowered down the slope on the end of a bulldozer cable.
This enabled the re-grassing of these ski runs before the arrival of winter snow and the colourful line-up of skiers.
On February 9, John’s wife, Beryl, and family were quietly pleased and proud to see St Mary’s Church, Heathcote nearly filled by John’s friends and admirers at his funeral service.
May his memory linga-longa with us all.