Remembering Graham and Margaret Walters

By Liz Cameron

Hugh Stacy and Graham Walters, image from Daily Telegraph

We are very sorry to report the deaths of long-term APS members Graham and Margaret Walters; Margaret died on 20th October 2021 and Graham on 12th January this year.

Graham and Margaret joined the East Hills Group in 1964 and Graham filled many positions, including President (2013- 2016), Vice-President and Treasurer. In recent years he was speaker co-ordinator and secured high-quality speakers on a range of topics which reflected some of his own wide interests in addition to growing Australian native plants – birds, conservation, Australian history and exploration.

Wherever he lived, Graham developed a flourishing garden of native plants and was happy to share his knowledge and experience of propagating and growing them; he researched and wrote notes for the EHG newsletter on many plants brought to our plant tables.

Graham was an avid reader and kept up to date with environmental issues, often quoting from recent publications at our meetings. He recognised the need for the Society to continue to evolve in order to remain relevant, and was particularly keen for it to act on climate change. Graham remained active in our group until very recently. He was present when our committee discussed a name change for East Hills Group and he endorsed the new name of Harbour Georges River; President Marie O’Connor really appreciated this endorsement from someone who’d been a member of EHG for over 50 years.

In 2014 Graham and Margaret attended the FJC Rogers Seminar on Brachychitons and allied genera, hosted by the Bendigo Native Plant Group and Graham wrote about the meeting in Native Plants for New South Wales 50(2): 42-45.

He attended APS NSW annual get-togethers including those at Tamworth (2016) and Coffs Harbour (2017), and was widely known by other long-term members. He was a close friend of APS NSW Life Member, the late Hugh Stacy.

In recent years the support of his family enabled Graham to maintain his involvement and some members also participated in East Hills Group activities – Robert spoke on trekking in Colombia, Sue on the re-enactment of the 1915 coo-ee recruitment march, and grand-daughters Ruby and Halcyon (with fellow Fossickers singers) entertained several of our Christmas gatherings.

Image acknowledgement: https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/south-west/east-hills-group-of-australian-plant-society-a-winner/news-story/3c2560f347071026bff183e4f1363999