David and I met as undergraduates at Monash, but only became great friends in our honours year. What a crazy year. That time would have made no sense without David. His humour, his un matched intellect and grace inspired us all. David was one of those people you could always count on. No matter what. It was in that year that Petra and I also became best of friends, and some of my dearest memories are of holidays we would take as a class at David's beach retreat. Some time after this David and Petra finally joined, and perpetuated the bond of love that was formed in those times. David was always with me in my subsequent years of wandering. I remember a particularly lonely day in Tucson, Arizona, when I received a large envelope from home. David had taken up photography as a hobby, and he proudly sent me a large photo he had taken of a meerkat. This was before meerkats became household items, and I stared longly at this marvelous photo of this strange creature. How thoughtful of my good friend to send such a warm gift from the home I missed so much. We finally had the chance to spend more time together when I got a job in the same company. We would have many coffee sessions in the warm afternoon sun, talking about family, current events, and even boring work stuff. But whatever it was, it was nice just to sit and talk. He was consumed by his family life, often talking about things he had done with Petra and Jordan and Isabelle. In particular, he was very much concerned with his plans for Isabelle and Jordan's future. He was the best of the best. I loved him dearly. I regret the years we missed together, am grateful for the years that we had, and am deeply sad for the years we will miss. Rest in peace my dear, dear friend.
A good workmate and friend. He was liked by all, easy going, loved cricket, boats and his family. I have only known David for a relatively short time less than a year since I moved in to share a work office. But during that time I looked forward to catching up with him to coin a phrase and “Chew the Fat” on a topic be it history, computers, current affairs or whatever over lunch time. When I came back from an overseas holiday last year and we spoke about travelling David told me about his travels with Petra through Europe and having to rough it on occasions. I especially remember that he enjoyed visiting Spain and spoke about a Muslim temple dating back hundreds of years that was well worth the visit. It was typical of a Monday morning to exchange pleasantries and snippets about our weekends, which David over the warmer months often spent at the Beach House with family. There were even times he just drove down for a day and took the children when he was home to look after them, but from the way he spoke he looked forward to the family weekends at the Beach House the most. On cricket now there was a passion! When the summer season was on he would walk into the office often with excitement about the merits of key players and the game hi-lights. What I most remember about his love of cricket was his discussions about Australia when they were losing to England. At the time he sent out an email around work offering to make himself available for selection as Captain of the Australian team and that he would like to hear from any volunteers for the other positions. As an aside he finished by mentioning that unless stretched ‘Family Pets’ are unlikely to make the team. One reply quipped that “That’s a shame as my two dogs Sam and Zoe would make great fielders”. The last email on this saga was from David who said: ‘Clearly someone has leaked this to the Australian team ……”. That was David he had a great sense of Humour. As for easy going he mostly wore shorts to work even on cold days. One day he came in after a trip away with work and admitted to having worn a suite, I nearly fell over with shock. He just shrugged and said something to the effect it’s not my normal mode but I thought it best to wear it. David loved his family and often spoke about the places they had been to and what they had done. In fact the last time I spoke to David he was telling me about how Isabelle and Jordon were and he was especially excited about his son Jordon being appointed Vice Captain and the pictures he had taken of the event. David I’ll miss going for a coffee and our discussions about your latest book or what was happening in the aviation world. “I still miss those friends I’ve known and who are no longer with me but I find I am grateful for having known them. The gratitude has finally conquered the loss.”
While David and I did not work directly together, we were colleagues. David's unassuming personality possessed a rare humility and warmth, which was so often conveyed through his broad smile. David was such an approachable person that conversation with him was inevitable if our paths crossed while on his way for coffee, or in the corridors. David so often punctuated our chats with thoughtful and astute observations wrapped in a wry delivery. He was always good for a laugh. I very much admired the way in which David placed his family at the centre of his life. I'm sure his gentle personality made him the ideal partner and father. My deepest sympathies to Petra, Jordan, Isabelle and family at this terribly sad time. Julian Vince