Monday, 14 November 2011

A Farewell To Bob

Br Robert McLaughlin is being buried at 11am today at the Mangere Lawn Cemetery. The FDMC staff will be represented in Mangere today and we ask that you keep Bob, his family and the Brothers in your prayers.

Thanks to those old boys who have left messages or reflections on Br Robert.  Brendan Rae sent us these following thoughts which seem to sum things up well.

As a day boy during the 80's, the news of Brother Roberts passing is as unexpected as it is sad.  I will always remember Brother Robert as the one who taught the first classes on the subject of those new-fangled "computers" at a time when they held most interest for the games like "Chucky Egg", played from 5 1/4" discs that truly were floppy. While that technology is unrecognisable now, he will always have a legacy through the school magazines of the period. His keen interest in photography was almost single-handily responsible for the photo archives we have of life at Francis Douglas over that period - whether that was candid shots of classroom activities, snapshots of hostel life or students participating in sporting events over the weekend. Brother Robert has left a very tangible impact on the history of FDMC beyond his spiritual contribution and his warm and gentle nature.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

FDMC, from its inception right through the '70s had been a 'Rugby school' various attempts at starting a soccer team had failed or wimped along ingloriously. Talented soccer players eschewed teh school team and played for a club in town.

This was slightly odd, since the primary school, St Josephs, had always had top soccer teams and was dumping a new crop of well-coached and talented young players into Form 1 each year (where they either left the sport, started playing rugby, or joined Moturoa or Central City in town).

Br. Bob got interested in this and realised that, with a bit of adult sponsorship, it was the work of a moment to continue on the St. Josephs' teams. By some time in the early '80s there was at least one soccer team for every year, and they were often damn good teams as well.

I remember a school assemply in '76 or '77 where the rugby master got up and said how successful all the rugby teams were and their tour of De la Salle schools in Australia was about to happen all boys should consider playing rugby so that they could 'associate with winners.'

Then Br. Bob got up and talked about the soccer tour of Fiji that was going to happen next year or the year after.

The the swimming master spoke, encouraging everyone to take up swimming, 'especially the soccer boys because it is the only way that they are ever going to get to Fiji.'

Those were the days. The school has rather come on since then, but Br. Bob can be rememmbered for, among other things, establishing soccer at the school.