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Top Rochester residents honoured

Rochester and district residents featured in the Campaspe Shire Australia Day awards.

ELAINE COONEY January 29, 2013 4:59am

Kidzcapers festival won Rochester and Campaspe Shire’s Community Event of the Year. Pictured are committee members Casey James (with her son Cale James), Ruth Borger, Sharon Herne, Di Burgmann, Jenny Kennedy and Ron Williams.


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Gallery: See more Australia Day photos here.

District sports legend Chris Trewin has taken out Rochester and Campaspe Shire’s Sportsperson of the Year awards at Australia Day ceremonies on Saturday.

Mr Trewin, who recently impressed Rochester residents by running the Melbourne marathon in three hours 12 minutes, said he felt honoured to receive both awards and said it was good to be awarded for something he enjoyed doing.

He said he would continue to train for his sixth marathon this year and planned to beat his previous best time.

Rochester Secondary College student Teleah Hayes also won two awards, the Junior Sportsperson of the Year for Rochester and Campaspe Shire.

Proving her dedication, the sportswoman was at the State Athletics Championships in Geelong while the awards were presented.

Her brother Harley accepted the awards on her behalf and said she was disappointed she could not be there but left him with these encouraging words — ‘‘if you really want something you should follow your dreams’’.

Rochester’s Kidzcapers was the centre of attention at the Australia Day awards ceremony as chair of the festival committee, Casey James, won Rochester Citizen of the Year and the committee took home the Rochester and Campaspe Shire awards for Community Event of the Year.

Last year’s Citizen of the Year Graeme Nelson spoke about Mrs James’ achievements with the event, which attracted 1300 people at a low cost to parents.

He said she came from a family dedicated to volunteering at the Elmore Field Days and when growing up often modelled Ag Art outfits.

Mrs James was referred to as a ‘‘natural leader’’ who dealt with issues with ‘‘tact and skill’’.

Accepting the award, Mrs James displayed her multi-tasking skills as she delivered her speech with her son Cale in her arms.

She put her ability to give time back to the community down to great family support, praising her husband Al for taking care of the children while she was at committee meetings and thanked her children Cale and Walt for ‘‘sharing their mum more than they were used to’’.

Mrs James said she initially volunteered in Rochester because she was new to the community and wanted to make friends.

‘‘When the (Kidzcapers) team gave me a gentle shove into the chair position I was very anxious but the team assured me they would support me,’’ she said.

Mrs James said she looked forward to raising her children in Rochester.

Best mates Chloe Macague and Alanah Eade praised each other for their success in jointly winning the Young Citizen of the Year for their excellence in school activities and mentoring younger students.

‘‘It will be something I will cherish for the rest of my life,’’ Ms Macague said.

‘‘I’m proud to be part of Australia and this community.’’

During the ceremony Nenita Bates received her Australian citizenship from Campaspe Shire mayor Ian Maddison.

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