Memorial for students and teacher lives on in Lowood
IT BEGAN with an unhappy ending to a cherished community memorial.
In June 1945 a tree, known as the Lex Logan Tree, was planted in Lowood to honour RAAF pilot officer Whitmore "Lex" Logan.
A popular teacher at Lowood State School, Mr Logan was killed in action during the Second World War, in December, 1941. He was just 28.
Planted in front of the school at the same time were three saplings to remember the tragic passing of three Lowood students.
The children - Catherine Luck, 9, Gordon Klass, 10, and Clyde Profke, 12 - died in unrelated incidents in the 11 months between June 1940 and May 1941.
For many years, the memorial served as a touching reminder of a heartbreaking period in Lowood's history.
However, in recent years the trees had become a safety concern and were regrettably removed.
Fortunately, the story didn't end there.
Almost 68 years after the original planting ceremony, families of the four who lost their lives gathered for a second commemoration event.
This time it was to welcome in Lowood Memorial Grove, on Prospect St, a new memorial to preserve the memory of the three Lowood students and their teacher.
Among those at the event was 91-year-old Doris Fredman, Whitmore Logan's only sibling. Mrs Fredman, who now lives on the Sunshine Coast, travelled to Lowood with her son, Robert Fredman.
Mr Fredman said his mother was overwhelmed by the decision to create a new memorial. "I picked her up in the car and during the ride she kept repeating how lovely the gesture was," he said.
"She was really touched that the community were so thoughtful as to re-establish the memorial and preserve her brother's memory."
Also attending were representatives of Somerset Regional Council, RAAF squadron leader Ian Fairweather and members of the Lowood State School community.
Somerset mayor Graeme Lehmann unveiled the memorial plaque at the new garden and said it was important to keep Lowood's history alive.
He said the memorial would stand as a place for families and friends of those who died to visit and remember good times spent with them.