There is no one who loves Goulburn as much as Margaret O’Neill.
“As long as I’m breathing, I’ll be breathing for Goulburn,” Ms O’Neill said after she received the Order of Australia for her extensive community work in the district on Australia Day.
A mayor, deputy mayor and now a councillor, Ms O’Neill is a vocal sporting enthusiast and has worked in the disability sector for the over 30 years.
“I’m not a person who looks for glory,” she said. “I feel very humbled.”
There was never a time she wasn’t giving back the community. At a young age, Ms O’Neill fondly remembers helping her parents collect money for community projects in town.
“My family raised me to give back, that’s how I’ve been brought up,” she said. “I was taught to share and help people.”
After she received the OAM, and looked out at the crowd at Victoria Park on Thursday, she said she grew emotional thinking of her family.
“I was moved when I saw my two children, Michael and Cheryl,” she recalled. “But I also thought of my husband Barry who passed away. He was always in the midst of everything I did. He was my backbone.”
Today, and for every day to come, she said her doors will be open for the people of Goulburn. “I want to thank the community, who supported me because it’s a two way street. I'm so honoured to have this bestowed.”
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