Australia has lost a wonderful community champion in David Gough. Last week David passed away in a motorbike accident in Sydney. David campaigned for organ and tissue donation following the death of his daughter Melody in a car accident on Christmas Eve 2009.
Melody was a multi-organ donor and she saved the lives of three people. Since that time, David has participated in riding around Australia to various rural, regional and remote centres in Australia. In February this year he embarked on his 8,000 kilometre ride during Donate Life Week. He travelled for 25 days and he visited more than 100 towns, spreading the word and raising awareness about organ and tissue donation.
I had the honour of meeting and farewelling David last year when he was embarking on his ride around Australia, and I also farewelled him this year from Old Parliament House. Each year he increased the level of support in the community for his ride and for organ and tissue donation. He was a great contributor to the organ and tissue donation cause in terms of raising funds but particularly raising awareness about the need for Australians to have the conversation with their loved ones about the need for organ and tissue donation and to make their families aware of their needs.