11 May 2018

Vale Gumbaynggirr Elder Uncle Larry Kelly

The NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) pays its respects to Gumbaynggirr Elder Uncle Larry Kelly, who has passed away.

Uncle Larry was a Gumbaynggirr man who was born in Bellingen, but called Bowraville his home. 

On behalf of NSWALC, Councillor for the Mid North Coast Region Peter Smith said the Land Rights network had lost a gentle but determined man who impacted a wide range of people across NSW and nationally.

Uncle Larry was a former NSWALC employee, former long-time member of Nambucca Heads Local Aboriginal Land Council, a former member of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Advisory Committee (ACHAC), an ATSIC Regional Councillor, a member of the Reconciliation Action Plan Committee with Southern Cross University, an expert in Gumbaynggirr language, was involved in two significant Native Title claims and numerous education projects over decades.

Uncle Larry often said that two of the most important things for Aboriginal people to keep alive, are their languages and culture, and to make personal dignity and respect for others a part of their lives.

Uncle Larry was a quiet man, but when he spoke, people listened" Cr Smith said. 

"He was a wise man full of knowledge, and his influence reached people far and wide. 

"NSW Aboriginal Land Council offers its sincere condolences to Uncle Larry's family.

"He will be missed immensely," Cr Smith said.