GRIMLEY (Western Victoria) (13:56:23): (By leave) We express our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Ross and Andrew Powell, father and son, who both tragically drowned as a result of surf lifesaving in the rough waters off Port Campbell last week. Together we mourn and reflect on these two selfless, brave and noble men who made the ultimate sacrifice whilst volunteering on Easter Sunday. While most spend time with family eating chocolate and catching up with relatives over Easter, let us all remember that there are Victorians who gift their time for the safety and wellbeing of complete strangers—people like Ross and Andy. I give praise to our first responders, including the other surf lifesavers, police and firefighters who rescued two others involved in the incident and who did their best in their attempts to save the Powells.
I would also like to thank the surf lifesaving clubs around the state that took the initiative to run fundraisers last weekend for the families of Ross and Andy, who demonstrated their commitment to everything surf lifesaving stands for. Many funds have been raised to care for Andy’s unborn daughter and his partner. I know the supportive and tight-knit community of Port Campbell will offer whatever assistance they can to the Powell family. I know it will be an extremely tough road ahead, but I hope the Powell family can find some solace in their selfless sacrifice. Victorians are an amazing people. We come together through adversity, and we spend countless hours volunteering in many capacities to ensure we keep our communities and neighbourhoods safe. In their lives and in their deaths Ross and Andy epitomised all that makes a great Australian. May you both rest in peace.