Memorial Gathering – 3 pm Saturday, 25th November 2000
Northern Suburbs, Memorial Gardens, North Ryde, Sydney
It was truly a picture perfect day with the sun beaming down through the tall colourful trees which surround Michael’s memorial nestled in amongst the verdant grounds of this beautiful resting place. Family, close friends, and many fans gathered to pay their respects to our beloved Michael.
Beautiful flowers adorned the memorial and one of the bunches of flowers which caught my eye was left there by Kell and Susie Hutchence who were in attendance and who had also visited the memorial earlier on the 22nd November. Their flowers were made up of Irises and Tiger Lilies and there was a card saying “To our darling Michael – forever in our thoughts – we love you and miss you – “Stay Young”. Love, Dad, Susie and Rhett.
Kell told us he had a nice chat with Michael and had said hello to Paula and asked the good Lord to watch over Tiger. There were many beautiful colourful flowers on the ground in front of the memorial together with candles and lots of grieving messages. We had gathered to celebrate Michael’s life and to honour the third anniversary of his death… we also reflected on the wonderful music he had given to the world and the nature of his free spirit and sweet soul which had touched many hearts… we thought also of Paula and her tragic death…. of beautiful Tiger Lily and her sisters Fifi, Peaches and Pixie.
The memorial site was surrounded by lots of warm hearts offering their love and respect to Michael, Paula and their families. Our highly respected mutual friend Dennis Patterson said a beautiful prayer for Michael, Paula and for their families friends and fans around the world and Kell addressed the gathering with some reflective thoughts about his famous and beloved son.
Erana Clark, who sang at Michael’s scattering of the ashes service on Sydney Harbour on his birthday on 22nd January 1998, and who used to be a back-up singer to Michael, sang a beautiful and heartfelt rendition of “Amazing Grace” which was greeted by a gentle gust of wind that touched us all at that moment.
We were also honoured to have the very talented Mark Williams sing a very beautiful song for Michael. Kell and Susie beamed with love and gratitude to the crowd and greeted all and sundry. A few of Michael’s close friends were in attendance and this made the event very special.
A heartfelt thank you to those who travelled from overseas – Mary from Holland, Joyce from Canada, Britt from USA, others from interstate and those who religiously attend for Michael each year. Our warmest thanks to the person who placed two beautiful metal candle sticks on each side of the memorial – they are truly very beautiful.
Coincidentally, in late October the BBC TV documentary unit in London had contacted Kell about wanting to shoot footage at the memorial site on 22 November for a documentary on Michael to be included in a series they are doing called Rock Shrines. Normally, Kell would not have wanted any TV intrusion on this hallowed day but after getting some assurances from Kate Patten the producer, it was agreed they could shoot some footage providing their presence was unobtrusive. Kate was true to her word and the crew shot a lot of footage and did numerous interviews handling these in a very reverend manner. This series is due out early in the new year.
It had been a most memorial day and I thanked the crowd for sharing their love with us all. We then moved on to Milk Beach at Vaucluse on Sydney harbour to commemorate the spreading of Michael’s ashes on the harbour back in 1998.