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What happened that year


Born on the15th April 1962 Sue suffered with failure to thrive. She was born underweight though she was fed around the clock Sue was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis on 25th July 1962.

Sue was put on enzymes, electolites and special oil for cooking (MCT oil) and also antibiotics for next 12 months, which gave her black teeth.





On the 16th of April 1964, her sister Jane was born. The day her sister came home, sue came down with a severe chest infection and was admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics and physio. This was her first stint in hospital since diagnosis and started on morning and night nebulisers.





In 1966 she attended afternoon sessions at Clayton Pre-school, which she enjoyed immensely just being there. Many years latter her pre-school teacher remember Sue for her butterfly like hands, she thought Sue was like a butterfly.



In 1967 Sue started half-days at Clayton North Primary School. She was not expected to live to reach her 5th birthday.


























She wrote her first letter to press when she was 14 years old.






Sue does a Secretarial Course at Stott's Secretarial College at Dandenong.



Sue started her HSC at Cleeland High School in Dandenong.



Sue finished her HSC.



Sue studies Philosophy at Monash University in Clayton. She had to give up studying at Uni due to the smoke barrier becoming larger and the smoke caused exacerbations and her lung infection kept going out of control.

She started oxygen at 19 – she used whenever she slept and used it constantly during exacerbations.















Sue’s left lung kept collapsing and exposure to tobacco smoke gave her severe asthma attacks that became life threatening from the strain. She had numerous surgical interventions to save her life. She had a pleurodesis to stick her left lung up. Then the right side took up collapsing! Her weight dropped around 34 kilograms. Her doctor told her she was at the point of no return and there was no hope. From his data and his experience, it appeared as such. However, she deeply desired to live.










Sue moved to Adelaide to live an independent self-sufficient life. She decided to live in Adelaide because it had cleaner air than her home in Melbourne.


She met Steven Cavallo and they shared many ideas over many meeting.


She went on a blind date with Shane Sody in December 1989.









Accepted onto the transplant waiting list on Christmas Eve. She returned to SA to clear up loose ends. Her lung was so fragile then, that it collapsed from perfume worn by a person. She had an intercostals catheter put in.



Sue does an Open Learning Course (Accounting and Psychology) through Monash University.



In May, Sue received the gift of life in the shape of a bi-lateral single lung transplant at the Alfred Hospital.


In October, Sue went to Europe and visited relatives in Portsmouth.

She said, “It was mind-blowing to be able to come here and see them. They were just names and stories you grow up with.”

“I am meeting relatives I have never seen before and it’s wonderful. I have had a lifetime of illness and this is the first time I have been able o come to England.”

“My parents were from here originally so it was fantastic to be able to return to my roots.”

She also traveled to Paris to deliver a paper to the Ninth World Conference on Tobacco & health at this time.”

“Every child I grew up with who had cystic fibrosis has died and parental smoking was a factor in them suffering more and dying sooner.”


Also in October, she discovers that the transplanted Lungs that she has are allergic (asthma) to cigarette smoke.



Sue does a bit of study - Economics - at Flinders University



Sue does a HETA course in Small Business and also does a course in Certificate Level 4 in Applied Design (Interactive Multimedia) at Torrens Valley Institute of TAFE.

Sue started Intramedia Design at 77a Rose Terrace, Wayville with Brian Wilkins and Ashley Hill. They each earned around $1000 a week at the start.



Sue met Aussie Kanck at an Australian Democrats meeting.

In March, Sue became a client of Merlin in relation to Internet access.

Sue took on the job of Newsletter Editor. She took what was basically a double-sided A4 sheet and turned into an 8-page newsletter with high quality graphics. She also established a second in charge for the newsletter (Jill Allen) so that the Newsletter is till produced even though she is no longer working on it.


Sue was keen to get involved in everything. She sat on various A.D. Committees. However she could not go to the numerous Protest Rallies and Marches that the A.D. attended because of her health and the threat of inhaling cigarette smoke.

She would ring around members to try and get them to attend these rallies. Sue was pretty successful.

Sue was also appointed the Federal Campaign Director for the 1988 Federal Election. She also ran as a candidate for the Seat of Adelaide in the State Election.

She was pretty good at organising. She ran workshops to make posters for herself and also for other candidates - she did this from her own home. She also went out and put up election posters at 6.00 am in the morning when there were no cigarette smokers around.

As Campaign Director she attended lots of Committee meetings and telephone hookups for simultaneous release of campaign material.



She also volunteered to be Campaign Manager for the Federal Election in 1998 but she wasn't here for a lot of the time because she was in hospital or was interstate.

She started off the Federal Campaign Manager's job in late 1997 with a great deal of enthusiasm but this was nipped in the bud because of her ill health.


Due to the disabilities and problems she had experienced since her asthma attack on the 30th January.


On the 1st of February, she walked past cigarette smoke in Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) car park but held her breath! Therefore she didn’t have an asthma attack.


She had a major asthma attack caused by security guard smoking outside of Casualty at 2 am though.


On the 21st of February, she was discharged from the RAH.


On the 4th of March, she was readmitted to the RAH - continuing chest infection.


On the 9th of March, she was discharged from the RAH for home with an iv.


On the 23rd of March, Sue attends at the Accident and Emergency Department at the RAH - visited Chest Clinic and walked past cigarette smoke.


On the 17th of July, readmitted to RAH.


On the 28th of July, she was discharged from RAH.


On the 28th of August, she had a Bronchoscopy and Endoscopy (Day Procedure) at RAH.


On the 28th of August, she suffered from Pneumothorax (lung collapse) as result of the Bronchoscopy.


On the 2nd of September, she told a doctor of her concern of Pneumothorax and was walked out on.


On the 4th of September she was admission through Thoracic Clinic, Royal Adelaide Hospital


On the 7th of September she was discharged from Ward S2, Royal Adelaide Hospital and transferred to the Alfred Hospital, Prahran.


She was unable to live independently in her house at Wayville and had to move back to live with her parents at Mount Waverley in Victoria.






At the time of her death in July 2000 Sue was working on a new awareness campaign ‘Where People Smoke Matters’. Sue saw the problems of passive smoking as a violation of human rights. Her strong belief was that smoking should only take place between consenting adults. Sue was particularly concerned for the vulnerability of children.


“When Sue decided… she could trust n the belief that we would continue her work, she announced to Sue’s mother Irene, that it was time, time for her to die.”


“She said, ‘Anna, you know dying isn’t difficult. In fact it’s rather easy. You will understand when it’s your turn. It is beautiful.”


“Sue asked to be comfortable, reminded us to hold her and gently closed her eyes and drifted peacefully from this world to the next, as always with dignity, grace and a cheeky grin.”


At the 2000 Carols by Candlelight Concert held in Jells Park in the City of Monash, Victoria, Sue’s message was read to the audience of 16,000 and appeared in the program.  It was heartening to find that no one was seen smoking in the audience and that children could breathe easy.


This is still being compiled if you have any information please contact me and send it to me, with the subject line - Sue's life info.


When did she start helping AD?  When had she started helping the AD? Was this the first time – “Adelaide Branch of the Australian Democrats – always helping out. 1994-1995 stuff stored at her place for the Royal Adelaide Show”???


When did the following happen????

RCH good Friday appeal

Lots of people thought Sue was a very gregarious, bubbly, friendly, strong willed, enthusiastic, loving, caring, warm, helpful, organized, very extroverted and very determined.

Stolen a kiss from Prince Charles

Kidnapped “Dave and Mabel”, two cockatoo TV stars

Rally car driver

E-mailed politicians about nurses’ conditions the week before her death

Organized a cystic fibrosis fund-raising concert attended by unsuspecting middle aged women – the event featured male strippers