Sorry Business – Passing of Bundjalung Elder Uncle Russell Kapeen

8 May, 2019

8 May 2019

Sorry Business - Passing of Bundjalung Elder Uncle Russell Kapeen

NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) and the Land Rights network mourns the passing of Bundjalung Elder Russell Kapeen.

Uncle Russell was CEO of the Kurrachee Aboriginal Co-operative, a long-time member and former Chair of the Bogal Local Aboriginal Land Council and also Chair of the Koori Mail for the past 24 years.

NSWALC Chair Roy Ah-See said that Uncle Russell's dedication to Land Rights will be one of his greatest legacies.

"Uncle Russell Kapeen was deeply involved with Land Rights for decades and was an outstanding leader at Bogal LALC and beyond," he said.  

"On behalf of the Land Rights network, I send my deepest condolences to the Kapeen family."

Councillor for the North Coast region, Cr Tina Williams said that Bundjalung communities have lost a committed and determined leader and mentor.

"Uncle Russell was committed to strengthening Kurrachee Aboriginal Co-operative and Bogal LALC and growing employment, housing and other services in Coraki, Box Ridge and the broader Bundjalung communities.

"He was a strong and stable backbone of our community and will be missed immensely," she said.

Uncle Russell  passed away on Saturday May 4, in his home at Coraki, NSW.


We pay our respects to the Traditional Owners of the lands where we work as well as across the lands we travel through. We also acknowledge our Elders past, present and emerging.

Artwork Credit: Craig Cromelin, from a painting he did titled, "4 favourite fishing holes". It is a snippet of his growing years on the Lachlan River, featuring yabby, turtle, fish and family.