Brian Lloyd named Tailem Bend’s citizen of the year
The energetic volunteer has been celebrated by the Coorong council and his community on Australia Day 2023.
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Brian Lloyd is the Coorong council’s 2023 citizen of the year for Tailem Bend.
The Australia Day award celebrates people who have made a positive difference in their communities.
As a volunteer, Mr Lloyd has contributed his endless energy to various clubs at Tailem Bend: the football club, cricket club, auto club and community centre.
He is also a driver in the local transport scheme, driving elderly people who need to go shopping or have other appointments.
Mr Lloyd estimated that he would have done “thousands and thousands of hours” of work for the community, joking that “sleep’s overrated”.
“You do it because there’s a need,” he said.
“If there’s something to do, and someone wants something done, go and do it.
“Be like a footy team or a cricket team: don’t rely on someone else, do it yourself.”
Mr Lloyd got emotional when he thought about certain things, such as his family, his life membership of his beloved footy club – the Eagles – and the citizen of the year award.
The award “means a reward for all the volunteer work I’ve done, but you don’t do it for that,” he said.
His wife Dianne is also involved in the Tailem Bend Auto Club and supports her husband’s many activities.
“She knows I don’t like being bored, and I don’t like to sit around watching TV,” he said.
“She’ll say, ‘go find something to do’,” Mr Lloyd said.
Mr Lloyd was born in Kaniva, Victoria.
He came to Tailem Bend 41 years ago after being injured in a work accident.
As he had previously been in Tailem in ’76, he already knew a few people in the town – he still knows a lot of them.
“Brian McLouglin’s almost 91, and he still helps me out in the footy club,” Mr Lloyd said.
“You make friends by helping people.”
Tributes given at Australia Day function
Mr Lloyd was presented his award at an Australia Day lunch of steak and Coorong mullet at Tailem Bend Town Hall on January 26.
Several members of the Tailem Bend Auto Club had brought their cars to the event as a tribute to their fellow member’s citizen of the year award.
When making his thank you speech, Mr Lloyd was overcome with emotion, but his wife Dianne rushed to the stage to hug her husband, which helped him finish the speech.
Mr Lloyd said that he volunteered so much of his time as he just wants to “put back into the community and make a difference”.
The Australia Day ambassador and guest speaker at the event was Barry Lewis, a former police commander in a large area that included Tailem Bend.
Mr Lewis praised volunteers such as Mr Lloyd and said “thank a volunteer if you see one today”.