A legacy lives on

Allan Rennick, Jade Kennedy, Gayle Shelley and Cameron Heath. 188610_01

By Michael Doran

 Each year Healesville Primary School awards the Tricia O’Reilly Memorial Scholarship to a Year 6 student who is moving on to Healesville High School. On Friday 7 December at School Assembly Principal Cameron Heath announced Jade Kennedy as the 2018 winner.

An excited Jade said that she had no idea she would win. “I am really happy to get the award and can’t wait to go to Healesville High next year,” she said. “I’m looking forward to learning new things, playing sport and making new friends.”

Tricia O’Reilly attended Healesville Primary and was tragically killed in 2001 while making her way home from Healesville High.

As a legacy to her passing , the late Senior Sergeant Tony Van Gorp of Healesville Police set up the award and scholarship which is used to ease the transition to high school, coving books, uniforms and school fees.

Healesville High School was represented by Principal Allan Rennick and Gail Shelley, who was the partner of the man who set up the awards, Sgt. Van Gorp.

“This is something the kids aspire to and work towards in year six,” Principal Heath said. “The winner embodies everything that we would want a Healesville Primary student to look like.

“They are academically accomplished, involved in all aspects of school activity, well organised and conscientious in always doing their best. They are also cheerful, respectful and fun-loving.”

Three previous winners, Marc, Jacinta and Chloe spoke about what winning the award did for them and their move to high school. Marc said, “It really helped me to get involved in lots of things at high school and I am really grateful that I won it.

Tricias sisters, Danielle and Cheryl, who both went to Healesville Primary and High Schools, attend the award each year. Cheryl said, “It’s amazing to see this still going for so long and we are really proud that Tricia has left this legacy behind.”