Minister Barr: Statement on the passing of Aunty Agnes
- Written by ACT Government
Released 12/03/2023 - Joint media release
With great sadness, we would like to acknowledge the passing of senior Ngunnawal Elder Aunty Agnes Shea OAM on behalf of the ACT Government.
Aunty Agnes was a tireless and much loved advocate for reconciliation, equality and the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
She was well known and respected across the ACT and beyond for her warmth, positive attitude and decades of hard work in the community. Aunty Agnes was loved across the community for her generosity, compassion, integrity and humility; embodying the strength of an Elder in the community.
Starting her life growing up on missions in Yass, Aunty Agnes went on to become a founding member of the United Ngunnawal Elders Council, which has played a pivotal and longstanding role in representing Ngunnawal voices to the ACT Government, particularly in relation to heritage and land matters. She drew from the strength of her ancestors, with connection to the country that we now know as the ACT stretching back tens of thousands of years.
Aunty Agnes was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2004 for service to Ngunnawal people by contributing to the improvement and development of services for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of the Australian Capital Territory and region. Her achievements and dedication have also been recognised through honours including a Centenary Medal, the ACT Senior Citizen of the Year and a place on the ACT Honour Walk in 2010.
Her legacy lives on in her children, grandchildren and great grand-children who will miss her dearly, as will we all.
Our thoughts and deepest condolences go out to her family and loved ones at this time.
- Statement ends -
Andrew Barr, MLA | Rachel Stephen-Smith, MLA | Media Releases