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One crucial lesson I’ve learnt from my old man

Discover what you want out of life, go after it without restraint and reap the success of your sacrifices. This invaluable life lesson comes courtesy of my dad, Ray, who this week celebrated his retirement after 40 years as a general surgeon. ‘Razzle’ has officially closed the door on his life in medicine, after finishing up as Director of Surgery and Endoscopy at QEII Jubilee Hospital, and on the council with the Queensland Branch of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. 

He’s soared to impressive heights after humble beginnings on the shores of Redcliffe, north of Brisbane, and launching his career in Cairns, where I was born. To give you an insight into how great a man dad is, I have clients say to me, “your father looked after me, so now I’m going to look after you.”

My brother is also a surgeon, my sister is a teacher, and you know where my path has taken me in real estate, but what’s important to know, and my siblings won’t mind me admitting this, is that none of us are “book smart”. Even my old man relied on an outstanding work ethic and sacrifices, over intellect alone, to qualify as a doctor and change lives for the better. He found a path he loved and did the hard slog, showing me along the way the importance of following a passion. 

But dad didn’t do it alone. My mum has been the spine of our family, a woman who kept the wheel turning at home so dad could live out his dream. Her supportive role and ongoing understanding has been crucial to dad’s success and our unwavering strength as a family. So we celebrated not only dad this week, but mum too, as we all gathered in a private room at Fortitude Valley’s Agnes Restaurant. A massive thank you to Ben Williamson, Tyron Simon and their world-class team of chefs and waiters who went the extra mile, with a bespoke wine-paired menu, to deliver a memorable evening honouring a very special man. 

Enjoy your weekend.

Matt Lancashire