THE community where Alby Schultz cut his teeth in public life has paid tribute to its long-time representative following his death on Tuesday.
Before he was the federal member for Hume, a position he held from 1998 to 2013, Mr Schultz was a Cootamundra Shire councillor, serving from 1983 to 1991.
He also spent a decade as the state member for Burrinjuck, from 1988 to 1998.
Cootamundra’s longest-serving councillor, Paul Braybrooks, said on Wednesday Mr Schultz’s passing was a big loss for the community.
“Alby had previously been a member of Cootamundra Shire Council, where he became well known for bringing forthright opinions and firm convictions for the benefit of his community,” Mr Braybrooks said.
“This ability to represent his community with vigour and to get the necessary result continued to be the trademark of his state and federal career.
“Alby will be missed as a local identity, a family man, a shire councillor and a member of two parliaments who was never shy to take up the fight for his constitutents, while also remaining a good and dedicated citizen of Cootamundra.”
Mr Schultz died on Tuesday after a long battle with inoperable liver cancer.
He was diagnosed with liver cancer in 2013, which prompted him to retire from federal parliament.
The former member for Hume also lost an eye after an accident with pool chemicals in his backyard in 2003.
The Cootamundra cricketing community paid its respects to Mr Schultz on Wednesday, with the cricket association, of which Mr Schultz was a long-time patron, saddened to learn of his death. Cricket identity Pat Kerin wrote in the Cootamundra Herald Mr Schultz had been a valued patron of the association since 1998.
“He was honoured to be one of our three patrons. He always acknowledged his re-election and his last acknowledgment was September 2014,” Mr Kerin wrote.
“Personally, I always found Alby interested in Cootamundra cricket. Sadly, in retirement because of his illness Alby didn’t get the opportunity to get to Albert Park to watch a match.”
Mr Schultz’s funeral will be held at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Cootamundra next Tuesday at 2pm.
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