What's On In The South Burnett Today?

‘He Was A Bloody Good Bloke’

Filed under Breaking News, Latest News, Media Gallery

Percy Iszlaub was a member of the Wondai and District Band for an amazing 74 years ... his tuba, surrounded by floral tributes, was placed at the front of Wondai Memorial Hall stage

Percy Harold Iszlaub AM ... February 3, 1926 - February 6, 2018

February 10, 2018

Wondai Memorial Hall was filled to overflowing on Friday afternoon for the funeral service of  the “patriarch of Wondai”, former Mayor Percy Iszlaub, AM.

The service was led by Lutheran Pastor Mark Doecke, the same man who conducted the recent funeral for Lady Bjelke-Petersen in Kingaroy.

Percy’s beloved Wondai and District Band filled the stage, and played hymns during the service.

Sports guru Russell “Skippy” Exelby and former South Burnett mayor (and former Wondai Shire Deputy CEO) Wayne Kratzmann read obituaries which covered Percy’s sporting, council and community activities in detail.

Skippy said friends like Percy were rare and described him as a “bloody good bloke”.

“We have a lost a great man and I have lost a precious friend,” Skippy said.

He said Percy was ahead of his time, giving a voice to people in society who didn’t have a voice, and making a difference.

Skippy recalled that Percy regarded Cherbourg rugby league player Frank Fisher as great a player as Wally Lewis, and believed it was a great injustice he never had the opportunity to play for Australia.

Several close relatives of Frank Fisher were present at the service, including Cherbourg elder Aunty Lillian Gray, Frank Malone and Cherbourg mayor Arnold Murray.

Wayne described Percy as a role model, a statesman and an orator, and pointed out that in the 56 years of local government in Wondai from 1948, there were only two mayors, Les Smith and Percy.

He said Percy’s legacy was around us all to see today … from Boondooma Dam, the Timber Museum, water and sewerage infrastructure, town streetscapes, the showgrounds, the racecourse. the art gallery …

Percy sat on many boards including health, tourism, electricity and rail; and was either president or patron of many Wondai not-for-profit organisations.

“Percy Harold Iszlaub Jnr is the greatest man I have ever known,” Wayne said.

“Our job now is to all step up a notch for humanity and the common good. He has left a huge void to fill.”

Opposition Leader and Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington and Deputy Mayor (and former Wondai councillor) Kathy Duff read the Bible passages.

Also in attendance was former Deputy Prime Minister (and former Kingaroy mayor) Warren Truss – who actually defeated Percy in a National Party pre-selection contest – and former Member for Callide Jeff Seeney.

Pastor Doecke summed up the feelings of the hall: “Percy Iszlaub was a good man; he was an honourable man”.

The Wondai and District Band provided the music for the hymns 'Abide With Me' and 'O God Our Help In Ages Past'; about 500 people packed into the hall and side rooms for the service

Members of the Wondai and Proston Rugby League Football Club and Wondai Lions Club members formed a guard of honour outside the hall

Tarong Community Benefit Fund - click here for more informationAnderssons Fruit Market for quality fruits and vegetables

One Response to ‘He Was A Bloody Good Bloke’

  1. Keith Kratzmann

    Percy was one of my best mates for 60 years.

    I was so saddened to hear of Percy Iszlaub’s passing earlier this week as we had become the greatest of friends which began as early as the late 1950’s.

    Our association blossomed in the next decade when as a printing compositor with the former Kingaroy Herald newspaper, I transferred to the South Burnett Times after it had moved from Wondai to headquarters at Kingaroy.

    In my role as sports editor, Percy was a doyen of knowledge with all codes in the region and as I was correspondent to the Courier Mail, Percy said why don’t you take part in the regular columns each day where they covered the State of Queensland.

    As a result one could send pars on any happenings that was held in the various towns and district within the Wondai shire. You could highlight news from Wondai to Tingoora, to Proston and Hivesville and any of the other smaller areas that had something to air – sometimes all in the one edition.

    Of course his greatest role in that time was with Rugby League both as a great forward in representative sides and positions he held on the home front while In later years he and the late Bill Oliver did something that you would not think possible.

    In conjunction with shire clerk Allan Keates, they were able to get a public holiday granted just for the South Burnett when the visiting Great Britain side played Wide Bay.

    One always enjoyed covering Wondai council meetings and especially when the late Cr Les Smith was at the helm when I was allowed to be a passenger on the council’s trip to Canberra and Parliament House plus inspecting the Snowy Mountains Hydro-Electricity Scheme.

    I well recall Percy’s involvement in the farming sector and his lengthy association he had with the Queensland Graingrowers Association where there was always a seat for the press in travelling to Toowoomba for quarterly meetings.

    Wife Alison has always been a special friend and we have always had enjoyment in one another’s company at many past council functions while daughters Jane and Leigh always made me welcome in my visits to their Cadell Street home.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *