Sep 7, 2010
Frank MacDonald R.I.P
Frank Ross MacDonald - 9th July 1942 – 5th September 2010
Father's Day 2010 will always be remembered by us, here we all were camped along the Gregory River wishing each other Fathers day not knowing that our friend Frank passed away that day.
As we got into phone range the messages started to come through, one from Franks number with a message from Marg, Franks wife asking us to call. We knew then that the news would not be good and it was with huge sadness we spoke to Marg and heard the worst.
We knew Frank was not well and suffering from Malignant Mesothelioma, he had been diagnosed some 20 months earlier and not given a long time to live. We called often to find out how he was but always Frank would just say he was fine and was more interested in hearing what we were up to. He was under going treatment and on the phone sounded as fit as ever, Frank was a champion Kayaker winning many long distance endurance races and he sounded like he could still pull a few races off, but Frank was also great at disguising how he really was and it was only Marg that would give us the updated news on how he was progressing.
We 1st met Frank`N`Marg back when we owned our Ultimate Camper in 2002, we had travelled down the East Coast and pulled into a van park at Lakes Entrance, we spotted this small framed, bald headed, very fit looking bloke with his equally fit looking but with much more hair wife next to their Ultimate Camper and we wandered over for a chat, we were soon all chatting away like old friends. We stayed in touch and over the years we have caught up with them at the Coorong SA, Broome WA, South West Rocks NSW, Burdekin Qld and also at our home in WA when they called in for a visit.
After a few years they chose to sell their Ultimate and buy a Kedron Caravan and as things turned out they bought our mate Kimbo's ATV, it's a small World, It was Frank who caused us to call our gas bottle fire pot the KIMBLE Pot as Kimbo had made it for us and unbekown to Frank he had been calling Kimbo - Kimble all the time he was doing negotiations to buy his Van, so the KIMBLE Pot it will always be.
Due to Franks illness they decided to sell the caravan and convert their Cruiser Ute to a 6 wheeler and fit a Northstar slide on camper to it. Marg was doing most of the driving now and it made it easier for both of them. Their last big trip was to Tasmania which they enjoyed but Frank was tired and sleeping a lot of the time. Frank always enjoyed talking about his latest camping set up and the dream was still strong to get out there, deep down i think he was setting things up for Marg as he knew that he wouldn't have long.
My 2nd last phone call with Frank was not a happy one, Frank was not his usual up beat self and we could feel the sadness in his voice as he passed the phone to Marg. I followed the call up a couple of weeks later to hear him back to his cheerful self and was told that his new medication was making him feel better. That was two weeks ago and now Frank has gone.
We always hoped like hell that Frank would beat this insideous disease but it was not to be.
You were a hell of a fighter Frank, if it had been a measly 100klm Kayak race you would have blitzed them, some fights we just cannot win and we will miss you and miss hearing your cheery voice.
In Heaven with Jimmy his beloved Jack Russell. Rest In Peace Frank.
Miss Me – But Let Me Go
When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me
I want no rites in a gloom filled room
Why cry for a soul set free?
Miss me a little – but not too long
And not with your head bowed low
Remember the love that we once shared
Miss Me – But Let Me Go.
For this is a journey that we all must take
And each must go alone
It’s all part of the Master’s plan
A step on the road to home.
When you are lonely and sick of heart
Go to the friends we know
And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds
Miss Me – But Let Me Go