On Thursday, February 1 the Camden Haven community lost a beloved character Daphne Johnston.
Daphne was born on December 10, 1928 and grew up in Belmore, Sydney with her eldest brother Harry and three sisters Betty, Valerie and Norma.
Daphne studied zoology and helped her professor collect anti-venom from tiger snakes. She also worked for OPSM and delivered glasses around Sydney on a 650 motorcycle with a side car.
Her love of riding motorcycles was a passion which transferred to her husband and sons.
Daphne married Peter Johnston and had three children Ray, Alan and Michael.
The family bought a delicatessen and lived above it for about 12 years. Daphne went on to own two other deli businesses before she and Peter retired in 1978 and moved to Laurieton.
Her youngest son Michael described his mother as being a beautiful woman who took no nonsense from anyone. She was also an incredibly hard worker.
“I remember my mum always worked like a demon,” he said.
“She was a great mother too and used to put on Elvis and dance around.”
Michael said Daphne always had an interest in politics and in the Camden Haven she formed the Camden Haven Ratepayers Association, as she was concerned people were paying more than those in Port Macquarie.
Daphne was elected to be a councillor for Port Macquarie-Hastings Council; which was a position she held for 25 years.
Daphne's devotion to the local community can be seen in her long list of volunteer roles and awards for community service; including earning an OAM, Hastings Citizen of the Year, a nomination for Australian of the Year and life membership to Camden Haven Meals on Wheels.
Daphne devoted decades to several community organisations including Camden Haven Sea Rescue, power and water groups that became Country Energy and Midcoast Water, Bonny Hills and Lake Cathie Community Halls, Long Day Care, Hastings Valley Netball Association, Camden Haven Redbacks Soccer, Kendall Show Society, Kendall Pony Club, Laurieton Swimming Club, Laurieton Quilters, Camden Haven Red Cross to name some.
Daphne will be farewelled at 11am on Thursday, February 8 at St Peter the Fisherman in Laurieton.
There will also be a wake at the Laurieton United Services Club after the service. Members of the community are invited.