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Sailability Shorncliffe advises of the passing of our Volunteer, namely Paul Garden. Paul died peacefully on the 21st of May, 2021 after a battle with cancer.

Paul was a valued member of our organisation. Paul, and his wife Nancy, joined as members in 2012. Paul was always willing whatever he could if it meant that it would benefit Sailability Shorncliffe. I think it would be correct to describe Paul as a quiet achiever, one who could do whatever he could without any recognition or fanfare. However, that depreciates the time and effort that he contributed. He helped out on the Safety Boat, and he assisted on the the pontoon. He enjoyed helping with the Sausage Sizzle, often with Nancy by his side. 













In recent years, Paul's condition reduced his ability to to do what he felt necessary, but what he could do was important. Paul's attendance was limited, but whenever he came down, he was content to cut onions, or interleave slices of bread with serviettes. All the time, there was a story shared, a memory conveyed, but there was never a complaint about the lot he had been dealt. Instead, he would look at the Clients attending and say that it was an honour to be able to assist these people. 

Paul epitomised what Volunteering with Sailability is all about, serving others even though he was fighting his own battles.

To Nancy and their family goes our heartfelt thanks that we were able to share Paul's energy and compassion. He made a difference, a tangible difference, that benefited all - Volunteers, Clients and Carers.

To Peter and Carole Garden, also goes our condolences, as they had to share this difficult journey.  To both of them goes our heartfelt  wishes for their loss.

Sailability Shorncliffe would not be in the strong position that it is without the contributions of Volunteers like Paul Garden. I will always count it as fortunate that  during my time as President that I had the support of  Paul Garden.               Rest in Peace.

Ted Balneaves


A group of our Volunteers attended the funeral service on Thursday afternoon of our former member, Paul Garden. All who attended were entertained by the eulogies of Paul and Nancy’s son and daughter.

Those of you who knew Paul well would be aware that he was in the Packing industry, selling many products including cardboard. Paul’s wish was to be placed into a cardboard coffin, which came to reality.

The coffin had a large sign with the message ‘GONE FISHING’ on the side facing the mourners.  A fishing rod, fishing hat and other fishing memorability was placed on the coffin. The mourners were invited to come forward during the service to write a message about their memories of Paul. I wrote a message on behalf of Sailability Shorncliffe.

On behalf of our Volunteers, a replica of an Access 303 Sailing Dinghy was placed on the coffin and later presented to Nancy, who was deeply touched by this tribute. Paul’s brother Peter and his wife Carole were also touched by this tribute as they were by the words of condolence that I had posted on our media platforms. It was a fitting send-off to a remarkable guy, one whose contributions were always appreciated.

Ted Balneaves


I am writing to advise of the passing of Jan Verdon, wife of our Former Volunteer and Vice President, Jack Verdon.

Jan had been battling cancer for a number of years. Jack stepped down from the position of Vice President in October 2018 so that he could devote more         time to Jan's care. I had met Jan on a number of occasions and it was a privilege to make her acquaintance. 

 Jack began to take more time away from Sailability so that he could take Jan to appointments and treatments. In April of 2020, Jack resigned from                   Sailability as he didn't want to pick up any potential viruses that would compromise Jan's already depleted immune system.

Jan has been in Palliative care for some time and about a month ago the decision was made to take Jan out of the system and take her to their daughter's         home in Samford. This proved beneficial for Jan as it allowed her to spend time with her family in a more relaxed atmosphere.

 On behalf of Sailability Shorncliffe, I offer our condolences to Jack and his family.


Ted Balneaves 

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