Students always in teacher's heart
DARK rain clouds hovered above St Paul's Anglican Church yesterday as the life of Maree Adelle Fyfe was celebrated. About 800 people packed the church where the Ipswich Central State School deputy principal married her husband Paul 29 years ago. Mrs Fyfe lost her life in a tragic accident last Wednesday, when she was killed by a garbage truck as she walked to work. Yesterday afternoon, family, friends, colleagues and students remembered Mrs Fyfe for the passion she had for the Ipswich community. Balloons that read "I love you" and "We miss you" were held by children in the church. Father Matthew Jones said people arrived an hour before the service began. Fr Jones said the family wanted to make the service a celebration of Adelle's life. "We have done that although the circumstances were tragic," Fr Jones said. He said it was important to focus on how much Mrs Fyfe had contributed to the community and shaped the young people of the future. In a reflection by Mrs Fyfe's sister Lynnette Naylor, she told mourners how her sister loved to dance. "She participated in eisteddfods at the local town hall and won lots of first prizes," Mrs Naylor said. She said her sister did not like working in the public service and wanted to teach. Mrs Fyfe was born in Ipswich on December 24, 1957. She was the second child of Pearl and Ted Potts. "Adelle excelled academically at Bundamba State School and received a scholarship to Ipswich Girls' Grammar School," Mrs Naylor said. "Her outstanding academic ability, particularly in language, gave her an equivalent TE score of an OP1." She described her sister as a "very compassionate person who would cry at anything sad". "Christmas was her favourite time of year because the eve was her birthday," Mrs Naylor said. "She loved opening her presents one at a time and wanted to make it last as long as she could." Mrs Fyfe graduated from Kelvin Grove Teachers College in 1977. She met her husband Paul in 1975 and they later married on June 18, 1977. Four years later on May 7, 1983 their daughter Alison was born. Mrs Fyfe taught at Ipswich West, Raceview and Ipswich East State Schools before working as an education advisor in literacy. She was appointed deputy principal at Central State School in 1994. Mrs Fyfe's brother-in-law Bruce Fyfe said Adelle had always been busy at family functions. "Dell was always busy attending to people's needs, preparing food and making time to talk," Mr Fyfe said. "Alison was her pride and joy. She loved dancing and supported her daughter's dance career." He said his sister-in-law had embraced the interests of her husband Paul which included watching rugby league and building their family home at Eastern Heights together. "She ensured the right balance of life was given to Paul and Alison ? they always came first," Mr Fyfe said. An unusual round of applause was given to Central State School principal Rob Lee after he delivered his reflection about his dedicated colleague. "She included me in the life of the school when I came as a new principal," Mr Lee said. "The achievements of her students were always at heart." A poster drawn by a student at the front of the church read "Mrs Fyfe was the best teacher in the whole world. I will miss you heaps. You shined here on earth and you will shine in heaven".