Tuesday, 24 August 2021
Hodgens, Mr Howard
[by video link] I rise to acknowledge the recent passing of Howard Hodgens, who died peacefully on 31 July, aged 96. Howard was a well-known identity of Melbourne's east, particularly among members of the Victorian Labor Party. A true believer in the truest sense, Howard was a man who thoroughly understood the value of community and dedicated his entire life to those around him. This is illustrated by his service—in the Royal Air Force as a radio technician throughout World War II; as a local councillor; as an architect working on the Melbourne City Loop rail project; as President of the Friends of Wattle Park; as a dedicated member of the Clayton Choristers; and as an active honorary life member of Humanists Victoria—and by his insatiable appetite for corresponding with community leaders and others on matters of concern to his neighbours.
Any person even loosely connected to the Labor Party in Melbourne's east would have had a hard time forgetting Howard, almost always accompanied by his dedicated wife Marie. There was scarcely a meeting, campaign or fundraiser where Howard couldn't be found. His steadfast devotion to the movement served as an inspiration for all of us. Howard is survived by his wife and three sons, Christopher, Nicholas and Julian, as well as grandchildren and a great-grandchild. I pray for them and wish to convey my deep thanks for allowing us to share with them in the life of Howard. I've no doubt that Howard is busily writing letters, finishing crossword puzzles and making the occasional dad joke in a better place.