Today I rise to pay tribute to a great Australian and iconic Lilley citizen, Anne Majella Stanton. Anne passed away on Sunday, 21 July 2019 after a 32-year battle with cancer. Anne was a wonderful teacher and was well-known and loved by our local schools. She taught at St Pius Banyo and, most recently, St Kevin's in Geebung. She and her family lived in Nudgee, where she was also a proud St Pat's mum. She was the adored wife of Neil and the dearly loved mother and mother-in-law of Mitchell and Bridget, Lachlan and Liz, Dominic and Sarah, and Rebecca. She was also a loving nanny to Elijah, Charlotte, Evelyn and Annabelle and the loved sister and sister-in-law of Peter, Mary, Dan and Gillian, Mick and Robyn, Kathleen and Mike, Sean and Deanna and Brendan and Christine, and aunt to all their families. On behalf of the Lilley community I send the family our thoughts and respects on this difficult day.
Anne was first diagnosed with choroidal malignant melanoma in 1987, when she was only 27 years old. She underwent surgery, which took her eye and marked the beginning of a very long battle. In July 1997, Anne was diagnosed with secondary melanoma, which took 60 per cent of her liver, and she fought this disease as it returned again and again and again.
In 2003, Anne commenced her first fundraising gala dinner, which she fondly called Walking on Sunshine. It was named after her favourite song by Katrina and the Waves. She decided to call her fundraiser Walking on Sunshine to remind everyone that, while it is important to take time in life to appreciate a sunny climate, we must be very cautious of the sun. Queenslanders face the highest incidence of skin cancer in the world. While a cure is yet to be found, the money that has been raised for medical research has helped Anne with her battle. She gave so much of herself, her time and her efforts to fundraiser so that others may receive help too. To date, Anne's foundation, Walking on Sunshine, has raised nearly $300,000. Inroads are being made into melanoma treatments which are prolonging life and hopefully working towards a cure. It is a cure that we all want and that we will continue to work towards in Ann's memory.
Ann's funeral mass will be held at Corpus Christi Catholic Church in Nundah today, commencing at 1.30 pm. As I cannot make it from this place, I honour Ann's memory from here in the federal parliament and thank her for her many years of service to our local community, to our local schools on the north side and to all Australians and their families who live with the plight of melanoma. Ann was a great Australian, and we will remember her.