From Mur’bah with love and fun
MURWILLUMBAH has lost one of its great identities, with the recent passing of well-known businessman Ron Hutchison.
Known as "Hutcho" to his mates, Ron passed away on May 30 at Blue Care Kingscliff with his life celebrated by family and friends at Melaleuca Station on June 3.
Remembered as a fun-loving man who was full of laughter and smiles, Ron's life was full and colourful.
Born in Brisbane in May 1924, Mr Hutchison moved with his family to Murwillumbah in 1936 with his father, Claude, opening Hutchisons Furniture Store six years later, which has become a landmark business in the town.
Ron joined his father's business in 1945, after returning from WWII service with the Royal Australian Airforce.
Not long after, he married Aileen Mapp and the couple had three daughters; Dianne, Marilyn and Gaye.
Life was busy for Ron, who after the death of his father in 1950, moved Hutchisons to Main St and was later joined by his wife who went into the curtain business.
By 1960, the couple had two shops in the town, but tragedy struck in the form of the 1973 fire that destroyed their Wollumbin St store, followed by the 1974 floods that inundated the CBD.
"I went grey in those 12 months," Ron said later.
"But the indomitable spirit of the Tweed people and their faith and loyalty kept us going."
Ron rebuilt the Wollumbin St store - where Hutchisons still stands today - working there until his retirement in 2001 at the age of 77.
"He was a fun man, he liked people and was fun to be around," said his daughter Gaye Wightman.
"He did enjoy a beer and talking to mates."
The family were touched by the number of people and the memories they shared with the family at his funeral.
"We found out about a lot of people he helped that we didn't even realise until after his death."
Ron is survived by his daughters, seven grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.