Celebrating the Life


Mervyn Lawrence Webster

27th October 1930

At Peace

17th November 2006



Caboolture & District

Tallowwood Chapel

1 Tallowwood Drive

Deception Bay, Queensland.


3.00 p.m. Friday

24th November, 2006


Rod Schafferius



late of  
1/35 Margate Parade, Margate 
Died peacefully at the Penninsula Private Hospital  
on the 17th of November, 2006. 
Aged 76 years. 
beloved husband of  
Isabell Leyvone Webster [Nee Callaghan] 
loved father of 
Mervyn, Sally and Sandra 
 grandfather of  
Shane, Amanda, Meagan, Nathan,  
Kelly, Brendon, Jodi and  
great-grandfather of  
Danielle, Jamie,  
Sarah, Brodie and  
son of  
Alfred William and Amy Edith Webster 
brother to 
Josie, Bill, Brian, Maureen, Peg and Ted.

















27th October, 1930 – 17th November,2006


Always Mervyn to his beloved Isabell but generally Merv to others.

*Mervyn Webster personified the expression – “You can take the boy out of the bush but you can’t take the bush out of the boy”.

With his laconic and relaxed manner he remained the country boy throughout his life.He may have lived in the city but he was country at heart.

*This is a yarn about his life, in abreviated form ,for there is far too much detail to address in one sitting.

*Merv appeared in this world on 17th October,1930 – one of seven children in a country working class family living in Cunnamulla.He grew up in a necessarily frugal household which had survived the difficult depression years of the 30’s.To quote Merv – “things were tough when there were more dinner times than there were dinners.” Whilst luxuries were few, love in the home was aplenty and this set the tone for the standards he was to adopt in his life.

*His junior years were spent in Charleville where the family moved when he was 5 years of age and he grew up doing the typical country boy things of the day.

*He did alright at school he says as he “discovered that there were THREE  kinds of people in this world – Those that can count and those that can’t.”

Consequently,with those skills  he chose a banking career and in 1947 at age 17 moved to Dalby to begin service with The Commonwealth Bank  of Australia – all  5’3” and 7st 7lbs of him.

He retired from the CBA 44 years later and was known to say that “had I known the job was not going to be permanent I wouldn’t have started with them.”

*He spent 2 years in CMF service whilst in Dalby – “it was good fun playing soldiers as no one was shooting back at you – they were good days as everyone in CMF volunteered.” 

*He first saw the Big Smoke (Brisbane) and the sea when he was 18.He has told the story of this visit when he travelled by train from Dalby (full of trepidation)expecting to be met by a relative at the Roma Street Station.However it was some two hours after the train arrived that his

escort turned up and Merv,the overawed country boy, spent all that time sitting on his little suitcase on the platform too scared to make a move.

*From Dalby he moved on to Goondiwindi and it was here that he met the lovely Isabell Callaghan who he courted and later married in 1953.Their courtship is another story in itself.

And so began a wonderful partnership which bore three children – Mervyn Jnr and Sally both born in Goondiwindi and Sandra born in Bowen.

*Over the years the family followed the nomadic life which was the lot of bank officers taking the opportunities of  promotion and management positions offered to advance their careers.

These moves took them to many and varied places for varying lengths of time in each town which had its stories of experiences to remember.The moves took them from Goondiwindi to Gympie to Ayr to Bowen to Stanthorpe to Maryborough to Roma to Toowoomba to Rabaul and Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea during the period it was  an Australian protectorate,then back to Brisbane and finally Chermside from where he retired as manager in 1991.

*Merv states that the move to Rabaul was the best thing that happened to the family.It was an experience where he and Isabel were involved in sport and community activities and an enjoyable lifestyle as part of the expat community which was prevalent at that time in the developing nation of Papua New Guinea.The family was in Rabaul on Independence Day which was a moving experience.He was honoured with an Independence Medal in recognition of his work in training local people to assimilate in the bank and progress in a developed society – he was only one of five people to be so recognised.

The families experiences along the way were many and varied and no doubt will be the butt of family laughter and happiness in the years ahead as  they recount those events.

*Merv was given to community service from a young age – beginning in Dalby when he was appointed Treasurer of the Junior Red Cross and since that time he has not been off a committee of some sort.His role as a bank manager put him in close contact with the community as a respected member of the  communities in which he lived and he gave community service through Jacees and Lions Clubs over many years.  

In these and his general pursuits he allways gave selflessly of himself in his support of others.                                                       

*Merv was a great teller of tall tales – both fictional and non fictional -and it was often difficult to differentiate the two.

Not only was he a skilled story teller but he had a love of and a skill for Bush Poetry.Merv Jnr professionalised his great skills in this area and big Merv thrilled to travel far and wide with him and to share the stage with his own recitations.He was a very capable performer.

Scarborough bowlers would be familiar with Merv’s impromptu and entertaining clubhouse recitations.

*He had a quick wit and a dry sense of humour and many was the time when his witicisms went over the heads of those who did not know him well.

His many bowling friends could no doubt attest to the Webster sayings  which would emanate from his end of the rink.Sayings such as:

*For the wayward bowler making a poor effort of drawing to the jack  it was – “They don’t make jacks like they used to.”

*For the opponent who removed Mervs shot bowl it was – “I’ll bet you pulled the wings off butterflies when you were a kid.”

*At the end of a losing game it was  - “I’m a good loser ‘cause I’ve had a lot of practice.”

*Sport played a major part in the life of Merv Webster from an early age.In the early days it was swimming,athletics and hockey;later on it expanded to include gymnastics and tennis but it was the playing and refereeing of rugby league, in which he participated for many years, that gave him much experience and satisfaction.

He tackled all sports with vigour and a serious competitive spirit and achieved many awards for all the sports in which he participated.

*Not all the sporting facilities he encountered were of a high standard –particularly in the early years.In swimming for example not all towns had a swimming pool.Goondiwindi was one such town where swimming competition was conducted in the McIntyre river.Pontoons were constructed on each side of the river and rope lanes taken across the river – even though they would bow with the river current.To swim in a 50metre event the competitor would first swim over to the starting line on the NSW bank  and then race back to the finishing line on the Queensland bank.

*Whilst all sports were played in and between towns in the South West it was rugby league that took him to most places ,from the southwest to north Queensland.Some 23 towns from Townsville to Charleville over a period of 16 years participation.                                                

*It was in Rabaul that Merv was introduced to the sport of Lawn Bowls, his sport of choice for so many years and it was in this domain that so many friends have been made.

He will be remembered fondly for his competitive spirit,his administratrive input,his support and commitment to coaching and umpiring and above all for his wonderful comradeship.

*Merv’s great pride was having carried the torch for both Olympic Games held in Australia.

The first was in 1956 when in Gympie with the torch relay on its way to Melbourne.He  was instrumental in organising the torch bearers over the 52 miles from Gympie to Nambour and ran his 1 mile leg near Pomona.

For the 2000 Sydney Games he carried the torch on The Redcliffe Peninsular.

He was eagerly awaiting the reunion of torch bearers to be held in Rockhampton next month but sadly that pleasure was denied him by the insideous disease which claimed his life last Friday.

*Mervyn Webster was a devoted and caring husband and a loving father and grandfather whose family was at the core of his being.

*To me and his many friends he was a great bloke and it was allways a pleasure to share his company.

*I am proud to have had him as my friend.

*He will be sadly missed by us all, but never forgotten.

















Shane Webster Norm Wesner
Brendon Stinson Brian (Friday) Dwyer
Neil Macklin Graham Tuckwell
Merv Webster Jayden Macklin
Brodie Thomas  


Thank You Mervyn


I want to apologise for any problems

that I may have caused you

on our lifetime.

Sometimes I wasn’t the easiest person

to live with

since I was so independant and strong

but you can be sure

that though it possibly didn’t seem like it

your values and ideals

did pass on to me and I have carried

them forward

in most things that I did.

You were always someone stable

strong, giving and warm;

an ideal person to look up to.

This gave me the strength to lead

my own life

according to my own standards.

Your leadership and love

had enabled me to grow into a

very happy person

and I tbink that this is what made our life together

a lasting one.

Thank you - Isabell.

Our Sincere Thanks 
Isabell and family wish to thank you for your presence here today, for 
your kind thoughts, your love and support in our time of deep sadness. 

Dad the Bowler

Dad the Bush Poet

We extend to you all a warm invitation to join the family for fellowship 
and refreshment at the Scarborough Bowls Club, Scarborough Road, 
Scarborough after leaving the Caboolture Lawn cemetary. 

Dad the Olympic Torch Bearer




A few lingering memories from family and friends


My yarnspinning abilities I attribute to my Dad who was always willing to share his vast knowledge of the outback and as a little tyke he told me how the crows fly backwards in Charleville to keep the dust out of their eyes. Proudly I stood up at school the next day and enlightened the class with my new found knowledge. Thank you for a life time of memories Dad and I look forward to sharing many more in God’s new order. Rev 21:3,4 Psalms 37: 10,11,29

Son Mervyn

My dear father-in-law I will miss you on our trips away and it will not be the same without you. If one could handpick one’s Dad I would choose you first everytime.


Daughter-in-law Chris


My dearest Poppy I always remember that you made time for me and I always enjoyed being in your presence because you were loving, gentle and kind. During the time we spent together you taught me humility. You have made me a better person and I loved and admired you for that. Your humility inspired me to try to display the same with others.


Granddaughter Meagan


Dad you always knew when I needed you to talk to, lean on and you were always there for my family, whether it was a major event like Jadyn arriving to just the simple things, like weeding the garden. I remember one morning at about 6.30.am. I pulled out of my driveway, ready to go to work, I nearly ran over you. There you were sitting on your milk crate weeding our drive way. Thank you for always being there.


Daughter Sandy


Merv, I’ll miss you in so many ways. Our trivia nights together, the stories you told. The true one and the bullshit ones. The tricks you used to show us and the footy and cricket talks we shared along with the books we used to share. But most of all your company.


Son-in-law Neil

I say goodbye today to my grandfather. It is only a little goodbye for he will always be with me in my memories and my name and I will cherish his memory for the rest of my life.


Grandson Nathan


I visit Poppy and we go for walks with Nanna. I went for a walk when Poppy was sick, but only a little walk because Pop could not go very far. We held hands. I want to visit him up in heaven. I miss him and I don’t want to miss him too much because I love him.


Grandson Jayden


I only just said hello and now I have to say goodbye. My grandfather has the face of happy man who had a passion for life and family. We say his name with pride. Mervyn Webster will always hold a special place in each of our hearts. Psalm 37:11.


Grandson Shane


You were my mentor, my strength, my guide, my teacher, but most of all my friend. You were always there for support, whether it was hard times or fun times and we had plenty of fun times.


Daughter Sally


I’ll always remember Big Pop as the most intellegent and honest man I ever knew.


Grandson Brendon


Remember when the 1st of October rolled around every year Pop. I would call you and we would start our birthday countdowns. You were always one day older than me.


Granddaughter Kelly.

My Big Pop


My pop’s life intrigued me so much that I wrote a biography about him and it even inspired my teacher to know that one man could achieve and be great at so much.


Youngest granddaughter Jodi


To my dears Issy, Mervyn, Sally and Sandy my heartfelt prayers and thoughts are with you now with your sad loss. I want to take this opportunity

to put into words how deeply I felt for my wonderful, tender, loving son-in-law Mervyn. I will never forget all the great things he did for me without Any Reservations at all. The feelings we shared come once in a lifetime. One great help to was when I wanted to use the phone. Mervyn had put any numbers I needed onto a tape with his own voice and this enabled me to contact anyone I needed myself. It gave me more independance. When I needed to go to Brisbane for medical help or holidays, Mervyn would meet me at Toowoomba, look after my travel comforts and deliver me to his own home. That wonderful person cared not only for all my needs but that of his wife Isabell, who needed care at the same time. A complaint was something that never crossed his mind or lips. He was one of God’s merciful Christians. He gave all of himself in every situation and anyway needed. One of his jokes was when the power went out he would say, "Where’s Nanna Martyn?" She is the one person who will be able to find anything. She sure had it all over us in the dark. One of my comforts is my talking watch given to me by my wonderful friend and that watch has now been Christened by the Hospital staff where I live, as Mervyn. They say to me press the button and Mervyn will tell you the time. This watch never leaves my wrist, even when I sleep. It’s one of the greatest treasures and it’s my wish that it stays with me forever. In my heart I know that God takes the good ones early and he certainly has a very special one up there with him now. God bless you my wonderful friend.


Nanna Martyn


When you have so many lovely memories it’s hard to just express one or two thoughts, but Merv you were always a pleasure to be around with your happy disposition and your wonderful smile. Thinking of your family.


Sister-in-law Iris


One of my fondest memories was how I loved when Mervyn visited and would always take us kids for a drive in the old car with the windows down for air conditioning and how I loved the sing-a-longs. I also appreciated so very much how Mervyn cared for Mum in her later years. You will always have a special place in my heart.


Sister-in-law Beryl



One memory comes to mind from the time I lived with Mervyn and Isabell for a short time in Gympie was going to the Sunshine coast for a holiday with them and did not know at the time it was to be the place I would end up living and enjoying life. It was always enjoyable being with Mervyn as he was a wonderful brother-in-law to all of us and a great member of our extended families. Many others come to mind, but memories are a treasure that time cannot take away. So may you be surrounded by happy ones today. Many thanks for the memories.


A Memory from Sister-in-law Margaret


Merv you were a dear brother-in-law and a wonderful friend. Trying to write fond memories of you is very difficult as there were so many, but the one thing we do know about you, is that you were the Frank Spencer of handyman. About the time you attempted to lay new lino in your home in Roma. Despite the tape measure, ruler, pad, pen and the blue prints you took a week to draw, they were all to no avail as nothing measured up right. "Help Friday!" The same thing happened laying contact in a cupboard. You had more contact on you than the cupboard. Then to Deception Bay to live. The phone would ring and I would shudder. "Help Friday! Bring your tools." Then the social visits. "Have you got a moment Friday as I have a small job for you - two or three hours later - but they were always good times shared. Forever in our hearts.


Sister-in-law Lillian and Brother-in-law Friday.


Memories are life long treasures and time cannot steal them as we carry them in our hearts. For we have so many, many, happy memories of Merv to look back on. Mervyn was not a brother-in-law, but was more a brother to me and was a wonderful Uncle to the Burns boys. We were always as one big family helping each other through life’s ups and downs. We only hope that Merv will now have peace, tranquility and serenity, just as John does in that great big place in the sky. Close to our hearts he will always stay. Lovely remembered every day.


Sister-in-law Lorna, sons Raymond, Darrel, Graham, Thomas & families


When I first went to Ayr to work and stay with Mervyn and Isabell, Mervyn told me it was custom to wear a yellow tie when going to the pub to show that you were a new comer to town when it fact, at the time, it was a colour that gay blokes wore. Fond memories Merv.


Brother-in-law Les

Not wearing shoes was a part of my life as a young girl growing up in Ayr and when I met my husband to be Les, I often spent time around at Mervyn and Isabell’s. Merv must of felt sorry for me having no shoes and always threatened to go and buy me a pair. Never could beat him at Scrabble and Mervyn thank you for always being there for us. So many memories.


Sister-in-law Lyn


In a family there are those children who look so much alike and Mervyn and Bill were certinly made from the same mould. He was very much loved.


Sister-in-law Pat


Many happy hours playing Canasta.

Ever ready with jokes and laughter.

Real true friend.

Verse teller

Young at heart.

Never without care for others


Mervyn will always be our best man.

Norm and Gwen (life long friends)


Some years ago, Merv, Isabell, Max and Madeline Hawes, Joy and myself had a house boat holiday on Myall Lakes in N,S.W. After a great week aboard and some marine lessons, Merv was at the wheel of the House boat in the river, on a return to ‘Tee Tree’. Merv, at the wheel, who was worried about a couple of singlets on the bow wire, let the wheel go and went out to get his singlets, thus, with a cross wind in the river, we hit the biggest paper bark tree one would wish to see. No boat can steer itself with a cross wind. Many laughs and a great trip. One of many fond memories.


Lock and Joy Mcdonald


The guardian of our Castle, the keeper of the books, the curator of our gardens and our friend and neigbour have moved away. He has left us with many memories of his dry wit, delivered with a straight face, but with a twinckle in his eye. We now realize how much time he devoted to keeping our homes functioning in peek condition. We will pick up the reins Merv and follow your example and though you’ve shown us the way you have left us a hard act to follow.


Your friends and neighbours Dave, Marie, Val, Dominica, Rachel and Sen.


Nothing could phase Merv whislt playing bowls as I recall the time I was playing him in the B.N.D.B.A. Singleton Singles. A car came around the corner and crashed over the fence near the greens. Merv took it all in his stride and went on to clean me up.


Bowler Paddy Breslin


Poppy thanks for all the games of scrabble and for letting me lean over your shoulder and help you with your crossword. Thanks for lending a helping hand to a rather lost and frightened young girl as she set out on her big adventure to places unknown. Thanks for allowing me to teach you the ins and outs of computers – for those times we spent in your office huddled over your PC. Thanks for the way you lived your life, for teaching me that you can succeed in life without having to compromise your honesty or integrity. That you should listen as much as you talk. That you should always face life’s challenges with a sense of humour. That if you just take time to look, you can find beauty and goodness in everyone and that there is so much more happiness in giving than receiving. I will miss your beautiful smile and that twinkle in your eye. I will miss the fun and the laughter. I love you Pop.


Granddaughter Amanda


How do you honour a man with words. All I can say is that I hope I turn out to be half the man that Mervyn was.

Grandson-in-law Marcus


Please Remember Me


Now that my earthly journey’s through from pain I’m now set free.

I say goodbye to all of you but please remember me.


I’ve left the body I’ve called home, I’ve run my final race.

And now I’m heading off to meet my maker face to face.


Good bye my friends and loved ones all. Please hold me in your heart.

I’ve done the best I can on earth, but now it’s time to part.


And if you must, please shed a tear then wipe it, let it be.

And say goodbye as home I go, but please remember me.


Poet - John Pampling

Family Album

Dad’s Father

Alfred William Webster

Dad’s Mother

Amy Edith Webster   [ Nee Newton]

                   Dad's Uncles and Aunt                   

Uncle Harry

Uncle Bert

Uncle les

Aunt Annie


Dad's Brothers and Sisters


Ted  Maureen  Dad   Peg  Brian

              Bill        Josie


Son Mervyn's Family

Shane      Mervyn       Nathan

Amanda        Chris      Meagan

Shane's                Daughter's

Danielle      and           Jamie


 Daughter Sara and Son Brodie

Daughter      Sally's      Family

Kelly       Sally       Brendon         Jodie

Kelly's Daughter


Daughter Sandy's Family

Jayden             Neil            Sandy

Mervyn Lawrence Webster and Isabel Leyvone Webster [Nee Callaghan] 14th March 1953