FINAL FAREWELL: Community celebrates life of Con Souvlis
MEMORIES were shared through both laughter and tears, as Hervey Bay said farewell to one of its true pioneers yesterday.
A service was held to honour the memory of Con Souvlis at Hervey Bay Baptist Church in Nikenbah yesterday, with hundreds gathering to pay their respects to the respected war veteran, beloved father, astute businessman and generous philanthropist.
While Con's funeral was a private, family affair held on Tuesday, Wednesday marked a celebration of his life.
It started with the Hervey Bay RSL Pipe Band performing rousing renditions of Highland Cathedral and the Skye Boat Song, with Brian Tidyman, President of the Hervey Bay RSL Sub Branch, following with remarks about Con's service to his nation during the Second World War.
Col Payne from Hervey Bay City Vietnam Veterans Association delivered the eulogy.
But it was the touching words from his family that said it all, with his son, Chris Souvlis, reading a moving passage from Revelations and his beloved granddaughter Tyra reciting a poem. His daughter Shanna then paid tribute to her family's much-loved patriarch.
"Dad came from the humblest of beginnings, but he had a natural ability to make a dollar and make the most of it through clever schemes and a lot of hard work," she said.
FULL COVERAGE: A tribute to the life of beloved businessman Con Souvlis
She spoke of family holidays, to Fraser Island and further afield, to Greece and Turkey.
Also sharing their memories were several of the region's past and present dignitaries, including member for Hervey Bay Ted Sorensen and former Fraser Coast mayors Mick Kruger and Gerard O'Connell.
The A Capella Bay Singers shared musical tributes, singing Amazing Grace and I am Australian and some of Con's closest friends, Adrian and Joy Daniels and Glenn Fallon, shared their favourite memories of their time with him.
Ian Brown, formerly from Betta Electrical, told of how Con had used his buying power to assist other outlets over the years and Ray Fleming from Meals on Wheels spoke of the support Con had given the organisation.