20 May 2015
A simple tree planting ceremony at the University of the Sunshine Coast tomorrow (Thursday 21 May) will hold special significance for students and staff in the discipline of Occupational Therapy and for the family of the late Stacey Mowle.
Stacey, of Tewantin, was just 22 and in her third year of an OT degree at USC when she died last year from a heart condition called hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy.
Her classmates and academics at the University were inspired by Stacey’s bravery as she battled ongoing health problems and were keen to honour her.
Occupational Therapy clinical trainer Marie Bridgman said Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Hill would plant a tree in the University’s ‘Moving Feast Community Garden’ (near the USC athletics track) during the ceremony at 9.30am tomorrow.
“The purpose of the memorial tree is to provide a reflective place for all USC staff and students to remember family and friends who have passed away,” Mrs Bridgman said.
Prior to her death, Stacey set up a charity called Smiles of Strength, which her mother Deb Waters is now continuing.
Mrs Bridgman said the tree to be planted was an endangered species of macadamia native to the Sunshine Coast. It was donated to USC by the Macadamia Conservation Trust and the Caboolture Regional Environmental Education Centre Nursery.
— Terry Walsh