I met Melanie when I was an undergraduate student in the early 1990s. I was very impressed with Melanie’s extensive knowledge of SEA and I asked if she would supervise my honours thesis (completed in 1993). She was an inspiring supervisor and a great support during the hard times. Melanie left the University of Wollongong shortly after I finished my thesis and for a number of years we lost contact. We met again about 10 years later when Melanie joined our ARC clothing project. Although I did not have a great deal to do with Melanie on a day to day basis, I was in awe of her vast understanding of SEA and her humble and gentle nature. I always felt comfortable asking her thoughts on a particular subject and I will never forget how generous she was sharing her knowledge. I will miss Melanie and there will never be another Melanie to take her place.
I attended Melanie’s Memorial at Macquarie University 15th March, 2013 celebrating the life and achievements of Melanie Beresford – it was wonderful to see the room filled with Melanie’ family, friends, colleagues and post-graduate students. Everyone spoke highly of Melanie. Melanie was very humble about her life’s achievements and many were surprised especially her family at her accomplished academic career. The ceremony commenced with a welcome by Prof. S. Bruce Dowton and speech by Marcus Beresford, with a musical Interlude (Angela Brewer), and further speeches by Prof. David Throsby, Mrs Kerry Todd-Smith and Prof. Mark Gabbott. Following the memorial a beautiful morning tea was served in the Gallery and people mingled and chatted and looked at the photos of Melanie and her various publications. It was a very fitting end to a life well spent although a life that was cut short far too early.
Honorary Research Fellow,
Faculty of Arts
University of Wollongong