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One of the good guys of Campbelltown: Bruce McDonald, RIP

The cortege is about to take Bruce McDonald to St John's cemetery.

The cortege is about to take Bruce McDonald to St John’s cemetery.

Bruce McDonald was one of the good guys of Campbelltown.

Mourners at his funeral today heard he was also many other things to his large family of six children and 17 grandchildren and his friends and the local community.

But it’s well known that having found himself in a position where he could make a difference, Bruce McDonald always put Campbelltown first.

There’s no doubt that Campbelltown has grown to be what it is today thanks to visionary people like Bruce McDonald, his mate Gordon Fetterplace and many others.

He was deputy council general manager – or town clerk as they were known then – for 11 years until he got the top job in 1971.

Not bad for the boy from Condobolin, whose first job as a railway porter meant his biggest responsibility was to make sure the toilets were clean.

McDonald arrived in Campbelltown 65 years ago but nobody’s really sure whether he adopted the town or it adopted him.

It was probably a bit of both and as a result Campbelltown and Bruce McDonald did very well out of the relationship.

In 1976 he was appointed chairman of the Macarthur Development Board, which enabled him to be a good guy for the entire region as it grew and grew.

But long before that, Bruce, brother Ron and a few other local good guys had this dream of a new club and the Campbelltown Catholic Club was the result in the 1960s.

 Bruce McDonald was 85 when he died on the weekend.

Final farewell: Bruce McDonald was 85 when he died on the weekend.

It was a mark of the man that Campbelltown packed St John’s Catholic Church for Bruce McDonald’s funeral this morning before they headed to the “Catho’’ for the wake.

Among the mourners we spotted Scott Wakeling, Mick Sewell from Campbelltown Council, Michael Lavorato, the chief executive officer of the Catholic Club, and lawyer Patrick Duffy.

The tributes from Father John Ho, the presiding priest, and his sons David and John, painted a picture of a wonderful human being who loved his family and his local community.

Former NSW Minister Craig Knowles also sent a generous tribute that was read out and which confirmed that Bruce McDonald was a Campbelltown patriot.

Today he received a worthy final farewell from his family, friends and associates – and those who did not know him very well but nonetheless were grateful for his contribution to Campbelltown.

Bruce McDonald was 85 when he passed away on the weekend.

May he rest in peace.



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