Item 7 MM2/21 The Passing of Two Local Residents – Mr Raymond Sloss and Mrs Mary-Jo Reeve.................................................................................................................................. 1
Mayoral Minute No. MM2/21
Date of Meeting: 10/03/2021
7 THE PASSING OF TWO LOCAL RESIDENTS – MR RAYMOND SLOSS AND MRS MARY-JO REEVE
Before we begin our regular business, I would like to pause to acknowledge the passing of two outstanding local residents, Raymond Sloss and Mary-Jo Reeve.
Raymond Sloss was an extraordinary man, always recognisable at community functions by his blue hat, booming voice and infectious smile. It’s not easy to sum a person up with a single fact but let me try: Ray donated blood 598 times. That is more than 280 litres of blood. There are approximately five litres of blood in the average human body, so he literally gave himself to help others 56 times over. That is an incomparable level of selflessness.
Ray was a volunteer training sergeant in the army reserve and a founder of the Minchinbury Jets Junior Rugby League Club. The number one field at the new Jets ground in Mt Druitt will be named the Ray Sloss Field.
Here at Council Ray was best known for his active involvement in advocating responsible development. He was particularly vocal in opposing the impact Cherrybrook Station was going to have on the amenity of Robert Road. He was a founding member of the Robert Road Action Group and the Residents’ Infrastructure and Planning Alliance (RIPA), as well as a member of the Save Sydney Coalition. He was instrumental in action to prevent the proposed subdivision and development of the lands known as South Dural.
Raymond Sloss died at his home on 27 February and will be sorely missed.
Mary-Jo Reeve was a special woman who will long be remembered for her contributions to the local community, most notably Booth Park. Many decades ago, when she and her husband Tom first moved into their home bordering the park, the park was neglected and had become an overgrown dumping ground. She set to work clearing one space after another until sport and other recreation could occur there. She also acted as a community babysitter for the children who would go there after school, while she would often talk to people who were sitting alone and seemed in need of a friend. In Mary’s home is a treasured gift, a beautiful figurine left on her doorstep with a brief note that said ‘thanks’. A few days previously she had helped a very depressed young person find a new purpose in life.
Throughout the years hundreds of plants and shrubs were purchased by the Reeves for the space, a gift to the local community. Mary took great pleasure in showing local children the possums and lizards that took up residence in the park, though she did call in professional help to remove the colony of brown snakes she discovered one day. In 2005 Council placed a plaque in the park that reads, “Mary-Jo Reeve. This plaque marks Hornsby Shire Council’s appreciation and the generous support that she has provided to the development and maintenance of Booth Park.”
Mary-Jo Reeve died on 25 January and she will be sorely missed.
THAT Council on behalf of Councillors and Council staff offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr Raymond Sloss and Mrs Mary-Jo Reeve, whose contribution to the community was significant.
The Honourable Cr PHILIP RUDDOCK
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File Reference: F2004/05878