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Basil Franklin Cameron

Male 1908 - 1999  (90 years)

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  • Name Basil Franklin Cameron  [1
    Gender Male 
    Born 12 September 1908  Douro St, Mudgee, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • Birth Reg No 37914
    Baptism 24 November 1911  Hillend, near Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Died 8 April 1999  Lulworth House, Elizabeth Bay, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Buried after 8 April 1999  St. Peters, Watsons Bay, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Person ID I67487  Clan Moffat Genealogy
    Last Modified 26 January 2006 

    Family/Spouse Jean Lillian Cable,   b. 23 April 1916, Campsie, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 August 1963, Camperdown, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 47 years) 
    Married 9 November 1946  Ashfield, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Last Modified 27 November 2005 
    Family ID F47206  Family Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • Basil was born in Douro St, Mudgee on the 12th September, 1908. The family moved to Hargraves where their father, John (Jack) worked as a mining engineer in a gold mine. The family lived there until Basil turned 8 years.

      Basil smoked a pipe, had long curly hair and at this time he was known as "Tim". Their mother used to drive into town in a horse and buggy very occasionally. Basil attended Hargraves Public School with his siblings. They used charcoal to clean their teeth and never wore shoes.

      When Basil was around 8 years the family moved to the "Big Smoke" to a Federation home in 103 Chandos St, Haberfield. This must have been a huge change for the family as they had to be tamed. The children went to Haberfield Public and Basil joined the Boys Scouts.

      Around this time their father moved to Taiping, Malaya where he managed a tin mine. Their mother had the task of bringing up her family of 5 on her own as Jack came home every few years by ship.

      When Basil was around 14 years he left school and went to work at Pratten Brothers helping out in the factory of a printing firm. Basil met his life long friend Eleanor Eager (Nell) here and they both worked for the same firm for nearly 50 years. They both became directors, Nell in charge of administration
      and Basil (Peter) in charge of the factory and sales.

      Archie (Uncle Mick) worked at Pratten Bros as well, until he was stricken with polio and his mother looked after him until her death.

      Peter had many other business interests over the years including: a petrol station, a butcher shop, poultry shop, marina, laundry, rural properties, a rabbit factory, investment houses just to name a few.

      Peter loved electrical gadgets, from the most up to date mobile phones to fax machines and of course he loved his cameras. He always said the best camera was his pocket size Nikon. He had a passion for taking photos.

      Peter brought up his family in 99 Kings Rd, Vaucluse with his wife until her death in 1963. When he retired he moved to Currabubula and later to Tamworth until he moved back to Sydney. Peter spent nearly 12 years at Vaughan Village, Watsons Bay (retirement village).

      Every couple of months he would travel North to Iluka with his companion, Joy Dixon, and spend a month or so at his holiday unit on the Clarence River. Here he found a couple to grow his figs to make his fig jam. Just weeks before his death his famous Jam was judged at the Royal Easter Show and won Third Prize. A mammoth effort for a 90 year old.

      Just 9 months before his passing he traded in his Mercedes on a Honda CRV, and insisted on the 5 year warranty.

      In his latter years he would love to be driven during the day and his drive always ended up in his beloved Centennial Park where he would take a tour and finish up in the shade and have a snooze.

      Just weeks before he fell ill on 26th December, 1998 his son Rob and nephew John Gray drove to Young where they bought the Christmas cherries. This I might add was an annual event for Peter.

      Peter was admitted to St Vincents Hospital, Darlinghurst and then later to Lulworth House Nursing Home on 9th February, 1999 and passed away peacefully at 10.45 am on Thursday 8th April with Jenny, Susie and Kathy by his bedside. Cancer of the prostate with secondaries to the liver and bone marrow.
      Sadly missed by all his family.

      Eulogy for Peter Cameron -
      Celebration Service, Tuesday, April 13, 1999 Given by John Gray

      Let me recall the main verse of Rudyard Kipling's poem entitled "If".

      "If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds' worth of distance run, yours is the world, and all that's in it and, what is more, you'll be a man, my son!"

      Basil Franklin Cameron, better known to all of us as Peter, or Poppa to his eighteen grandchildren, was born in Mudgee on September 12, 1908 - some 90 and half years ago - the middle child of five, with a sister Audrey, and brothers Archie, Harold and Vernon, all of who have pre-deceased him.

      Peter grew up, first in Hargraves, near Mudgee, where his father John managed a gold mine, later moving with his mother to Haberfield - while his father lived in Taiping for many years, in north-central Malaya, in charge of an extensive tin-dredging operation.

      In the lengthy absence of his father, Peter became a tower of support for his much-loved mother, Sara - a role intensified when at the age of about twenty, his older brother Archie was stricken with polio, resulting in him becoming a paraplegic.

      Peter devoted himself untiringly to Archie's well-being, joining his mother in the role of constant carer - taking him on trips and holidays to the country, often physically carrying him from place to place. This continued until Peter was in his mid-thirties, when Archie found other friends and ultimately married (some twenty years later).

      During this long commitment, after his father returned home very ill, finally dying in 1938, Peter attended to family affairs, often making exhausting, rushed trips to Tamworth to sort out and attend to business details regarding his father's demanding pastoral property at nearby Danglemah.

      At the age of 38, Peter married Jean Cable and there began a very happy married life with six children, John, Robert, Kathy, Peter, Jenny and Susie.

      Then tragedy struck with Jean dying of cancer after a long illness through which Peter nursed her devotedly.

      From this time, until the end of his earthly life, Peter's love for family became his ruling passion. He was, in effect, both father and mother to his children, who at the time of Jean's death, ranged in age from 6 - 16.

      The results of that care and devotion were epitomized emphatically on the occasion of his 90th birthday party, some six months ago, when he was surrounded by not only his six grown-up children, their spouses and eighteen grandchildren, but also by an impressive number of relatives and friends, some from very long distances - sharing in a day Peter, later and often described as the "happiest day of my life".

      When we think of Peter, let us remember him for how fully and objectively he lived his long life - how he "filled every minute with sixty seconds worth of distance run".

      Peter Cameron had a multitude of interests. Some, of the many, spring to mind - photography, travel, agriculture, fresh fruit for which he had a strong passion, the sea and particularly deep-sea fishing at which he had excelled, cooking (and who could forget his ox-tail soup, his brawn and his own way of presenting meat and three vegies), property development, among a host of others.

      Most of all Peter Cameron was interested in people.

      Peter Cameron was fiercely independent, sharply focused and a loved and loving man, intensely proud of his family.

      Peter Cameron was a stickler for quality and success - only the very best would do.

      Here's an example of him wanting only the best. As recently as two or three weeks ago his fig jam, at first attempt, won third prize at the Royal Easter Show. Of course he was elated, but at the age of ninety, he informed his son Robert that "I have to get hold of some of the 1st Prize winner's jam so I can identify how to improve and beat them next year".

      He was adroit in business, a splendid raconteur and he had a fine, but sometimes obtuse sense of humor.

      Peter Cameron was a man of vision and vigor who would strain every nerve to achieve the best result from any situation - adverse or favorable.

      Peter Cameron was a wise man - his opinion was always worth listening to - whether we asked for it or not.

      Peter Cameron had an enthusiasm for life that we could all try to emulate. He didn't wait for opportunities - he created them.

      Each one of us here today is a much better person for having known Peter.

      At this stage, on behalf of Peter, I guess, I must give some heartfelt thanks. First we must pay tribute to his 6 children, for their devotion and loving care generally, but particularly over the past three and a half testing months. Then I must acknowledge his life time friend, work mate at Pratten Bros. and sometime business associate, Nell Eager. Thank you Nell also for your detailed help in compiling the eulogy.

      Finally, may I convey sincere gratitude to his driver, carer and constant companion, over the past decade, Joy Dickson.

      If Peter could speak to us today, he may well be inclined to agree with this message for us all -

      "If you wish to remember me best, do it be ensuring that our immediate and extended family is bonded and enhanced, by a conscious and continuing commitment, from each of us, to love, respect, understand and tolerate one another, way into the future." [1]

  • Sources 
    1. [S897] GEDCOM file from “Thomas Egbert Moffatt's Family3.FTW”, from Kathy Jackson.

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