There are not many people who can leave such an indelible mark on so many people in so many places – Gav was and remains one of those rare and beautiful individuals whom we are privileged to know. He was blessed with energy, vision, commitment, passion, joy, generosity, empathy and above all love.
He redefined the meaning of being Aboriginal within both the Australian and International contexts for an entire generation through his myriad ventures, concepts and events. Gav truly portrayed his desire for a positive and hopeful Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth in every possible avenue and with the gusto and verve (not to mention style) that only he could muster.
I can still see Gav’s face when the original funding for Deadly Sounds was secured and, if anyone needed a reminder of how much of a unique trailblazer he was consider this image from 20 years ago … in one commercial radio booth sat a certain “voice of Australia” behind his trademark gold microphone, exhibiting a somewhat bewildered and uncomprehending stare, as Gavin and Rhoda recorded Deadly Sounds in the very next studio. The irony was not lost on anyone and it encapsulated Gav’s belief that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people can do ANYTHING!
There is a real sense of bewilderment at his loss, a hurt, a pain that is the marker of someone who is genuinely transformative. We will all miss you brother. Dream on …