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Sad loss with death of Dame Elisabeth Murdoch at 103

December 6, 2012

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By SHIRLEY BROUN

TRIBUTES have flowed in from around the world after the death yesterday, December 5, of philanthropist Dame Elisabeth Murdoch.

Dame Elisabeth was married to pioneering Australian journalist Keith Murdoch. The couple had four children including Helen, media baron Rupert, Anne and Janet.

I had the pleasure of meeting this wonderful, warm, graceful and humorous woman while Magazine and Womens Editor of The Land Newspaper in Sydney over 20 years ago. She was keen to let me know that she followed my column regularly and looked forward to her copy of `The Land’ each week to keep up with my travels and the plight of the `man on the land’. Such was her interest in people and places. And, I will always remember her endearing smile and that special twinkle in her eye. A true inspiration.

Dame Elisabeth was a great supporter of charities across the nation for which she will long be remembered.

Rupert Murdoch said his mother would be missed by thousands of Australians whose lives she touched … and, he is right, people such as I are among them. “Many thanks for condolences about my mother,” Mr Murdoch tweeted. “A great lady, wife, mother and citizen.”
In a statement, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said: “Dame Elisabeth Murdoch lived a great Australian life. Her example of kindness, humility and grace was constant. She was not only generous, she led others to generosity. Australia’s children and Australia’s artists have lost one of their greatest benefactors.”

Dame Elisabeth Murdoch AC, DBE was born on February 8, 1909 in Melbourne and educated at Clyde School. She died peacefully at her home near Melbourne.

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