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Vale Bruce Edmunds OAM

Wednesday, 6th July 2022

It is with much sadness that we advise you of the passing of Past Commodore and Life Member Bruce Edmunds OAM.
Bruce was a highly esteemed and well regarded member of our great club for more than 66 years. He filled many honorary roles in the club going back nearly 50 years.
Commodore Doug Russell asked Bruce to become treasurer in 1983. At the time Bruce had been treasurer of the ORCV for 10 years and he then resigned and became treasurer at SYC. Bruce was recognised for rejuvenating the office, he appointed a general manager and introduced computerised systems that changed the way the Club ran. The administration became a far more efficient one and set the tone for things to come.
Bruce also had a hand and was credited with SYC becoming Incorporated in 1986, which required a constitutional change and also paved the way for family membership.
Bruce went on to become Commodore from 1993-1995 and his achievements are nothing short of remarkable.
His greatest personal achievement was the negotiation of a new lease for SYC. After seven years of negotiation with four government ministers, SYC received the first 50-year lease granted to a club like ours and at a rental the Club could afford. The new lease arrangements allowed the club’s future administration to take a path that has given us a new harbour, hard-stand and now a new clubhouse.
Then along with Graeme Ainley, Graeme Griffiths and Les Black, Bruce was part of this formidable working group that delivered to SYC the floating marina that we continue to enjoy to this day. And it was Bruce who had the pleasure of being the Commodore to open it with Hon Mark Birrell, Minister for Conservation and the Environment. It was the envy of other yacht clubs around the bay and it has underpinned our Club’s position to this very day.
Club Historian Graeme Disney recalls some fond memories of Bruce, “a keen and most valuable member of the club, Bruce was responsible for many improvements and successes. He was always committed to the task at hand and he played a major role in laying the foundation of our club’s growth and improvement in the coming years. He was never ‘pushy’ and was usually rather quiet, but always dedicated in whatever task he was leading. Bruce dragged the club, during difficult times, into a new world. It was an honour to have served with him. I shall never forget him.”
Bruce was awarded life membership of SYC in 1996.
Bruce was an avid and keen sailor and he enjoyed countless club and ocean races in Carina, Aquila and Kings Cross before adopting cruising in his beautiful sloop Foreign Affair.
Bruce had good success in his various yachts, some highlights include;
  • From 1982 – 88 in he won the Commodore in Chief, the Jisuma , and the Tam O’Shanter trophies
  • Between 1977 and 1985 Bruce competed in 5 Sydney to Hobarts with the best placing a 12th (1 place ahead of Paul Jacka in a similar S&S 34)
  • In 1988/89 he joined forces with Robert Green and purchased ‘Kings Cross’ a Davidson 36. They raced the 1988 Sydney to Hobart finishing 23rd (our current Rear Commodore Mark Welsh was aboard on his first ocean race)
  • After Kings Cross, Bruce later turned to cruising in Foreign Affair and had wonderful adventures to the Whitsundays and around the South Pacific
  • In later years Bruce was sailing in Wednesday Wonders as recently as 2019/20 on Rollercoaster and in 2020/21 on Summer Wind. Thank you to those Members who extended Bruce’s sailing career.
All in all Bruce made an incredible contribution to the Sandringham Yacht Club over an extended period and on behalf of all SYC Members we express our gratitude and condolences to June, Stephen and the Edmunds family.
Bruce Edmunds OAM 10 October 1932 – 28 June 2022. A Celebration of Life was held at SYC on Wednesday 6 July 2022 with the most befitting of backdrops, a Wednesday Wonders yacht race.
A video copy of the COL will be available on Robert Nelson Funerals website